According to a poll commissioned by the Ministry of Defence and conducted in August by an Iraqi university research team, 65 % of Iraqis believe attacks on U.S. and British troops are justified, 82 % of those polled said they were "strongly opposed" to the presence of the foreign troops. Less than 1 percent believed that the forces were responsible for any improvement in security,
"The original draft of the Constitution did set important benchmarks for democracy and personal freedom for Iraqis. It even concludes with a statement on environmental protection that Americans should envy. But these advances are overshadowed by what the Constitution left out. Specifically, there are no references to three issues that of primary concern to most Arabs, and especially Sunni Iraqis: A prohibition on the long-term presence of foreign--read American--troops in the country, a firm statement emphasizing Iraqi control of production and distribution of the country's oil resources, and a commitment to rebuilding the social infrastructure that was devastated by the invasion and subsequent wholesale privatization of the country's economy under US auspices.
"For most every Arab Iraqi the withdrawal of all American and other foreign troops is the sine qua non for ending the insurgency. That the constitutional negotiators couldn't include any prohibition of foreign troops, or deal straightforwardly with the other two core issues, demonstrates the continuing and largely deleterious power of the
"In this framework, three out of the four amendments passed last week to assuage Sunni voters will not achieve their aim. The first amendment, adding the phrase "The Constitution is the guarantee of the unity of the country," might have important symbolic value, but is meaningless if the violence and insurgency continue. The second, mandating Arabic as an official language in Kurdistan, will also make little difference for Arabs living in Kurdistan if, as is case with Arabic in
"The third amendment, slowing down the de-Baathification program and ending the purge of former party members who weren't directly involved in the former regime's crimes, is the one positive step of the four, as it will go a long way to ameliorating the concerns of Sunni politicians, and even ordinary workers, who were part of the Baath party during the previous regime.
"But the final and most important amendment, setting up a Parliamentary committee to suggest a one-time set of changes or amendments to the Constitution after the elections in December, will likely not bring any of the changes to the Constitution , Sunnis are demanding. Even if every eligible Sunni voter had voted on Saturday and in the parliamentary elections scheduled for December, they will remain too small a minority to change the Constitution in a manner that would shift significant resources, revenues or political power away from Kurds and Shiites and to their communities.
"Because of this, the statement by President Talibani that the Constitution has addressed all Sunni concerns is simply not true. More accurate is the statement made by Shiite legislator Saad Jawad that the last minute amendments were "an added bonus" to convince Sunnis to vote for the Constitution without making any substantive changes to the balance of power enshrined therein.
"Given this situation it is unlikely that most Sunni leaders will change their view of the insurgency as the only true bargaining chip they have to force Kurds and Shiites to sacrifice some of their power, or to achieve a full withdrawal of Coalition forces from Iraq."
"As to rights of regions, while these could not be amended at all without a regions consent, this provision applies only to regions already formed, presently Kurdistan. In this version it would seem that the Iraqi Islamic Party sold its support for a pot of porridge, i.e. a mere committee, since the regulations concerning regions all remain in place, and require, as before the so-called compromise, a 2 / 3 parliamentary vote to change them, which a nationalist side led by the Sunnis or anyone else is not going to have against Kurdish and Shi'ite opposition under any conceivable electoral and coalition building scenarios."
Another authenticated version that was read in the Parliament 'also involves the formation of the relevant committee, but suspends the operation of all sections of the normal amendment rule (previous art.122 , now art.125 ) for the relevant period of four months after the election of the National Assembly. That body under this rule would approve a full package of amendments, as a whole, by absolute majority (i.e. of all members).
Another 6 months would have given a chance for a historic compromise among the three major groups as now defined, or among more and different ones if there is a political re-orientation and re-alignment but it did not fit with Bush agenda .If a process of constitution modification failed , likely ,then Iraqis would be back with a new constitution that is strongly biased in favor of a regionalist break-up of the country with the possibility for example of mega regions, and the resolution of disputed constitutional questions concerning social status and formation of regions by simple majorities.
Thus, the Shias and Kurds did not act in good faith when making the concession to the Sunnis, in fact they were engaging in nothing but an effort to get a few more Sunni votes in the referendum, and to split the Sunni parties. There appears little real chance still for some kind of historic compromise. For the moment, the parties of the government got their very poor constitution passed despite all the gaps and illegalities.
He said that the Western leaders claims to introduce democracy, was "unreal" to most of
"You may say at this point: what about the Iraqi elections? Well, President Bush himself answered this question when he said: "We cannot accept that there can be free democratic elections in a country under foreign military occupation". I had to read that statement twice before I realised that he was talking about