As a result, people are taking a second look at the government of iraqi PM Nouri al-Maliki and finding it very, very wanting.
The taunts and insults hurled at Saddam Hussein minutes before his execution Saturday have prompted some U.S. officials and Iraqi politicians to conclude that Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki's government is led by Shiite Muslim radicals and can't be counted on to disarm Shiite militias.
Several U.S. officials in Baghdad and Washington told McClatchy Newspapers that, practically speaking, the Bush administration no longer can expect Maliki to tackle the militias because Saddam's hanging exposed the depth of the government's sectarianism.
The scene at the execution "confirms everyone's worst speculations about the government: It is sectarian and incompetent," said a U.S. official who agreed to speak under a promise of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the topic. The militias and Maliki's government are intertwined "so much that you don't know for sure from issue to issue what is the militia and what is the government," the official said.
The view from the ground seems to back that up.
Faiza al-Arjji's A Family in Baghdad:
...Bush, the liar, the blood guilty, covers up their mishaps, applauds them, and supports them. Why?
Because the equation is clear, and the agreement is clear now, as roles were distributed as such: you, Americans, occupy Iraq, build your military bases, and we [the iraqi government] build with you; prisons in which to put every Iraqi who refuses us or refuses you, your companies would invest Iraqi oil indefinitely, until it dries up, and Iraq would be left a desert… and we; the struggling heroes opposition men, shall sit on the ruling seats, build militias to kill the Iraqis who do not want us, and terrorize the others, steal whatever we can from public funds, and we shall never ask you to leave Iraq, ever… we cover up for you, and you cover up for us…..
You remain in Iraq…and we remain on the ruling seats…
Shall we call it a deal?
"Perhaps the video's most chilling notes are the chants of 'Muqtada! Muqtada! Muqtada!'" The New York Times' Frank Rich writes, "They are further confirmation, as if any were needed, that our principal achievement in Iraq over four years has been to empower a jihadist mini-Saddam in place of the secular original."
A while back, I wrote that the iraqi government would have to build alliances to survive. This wasn't the choice of allies I would've made.
For those still in denial about iraqi civil war, the sides have already been chosen. If Bush's 'surge' goes forward, we may be, for all intents and purposes, securing territory and training soldiers for the side of Muqtada al-Sadr and the Madi Army.
That's not what anyone signed up for.
Technorati tags: politics; war; Bush; military; the execution of Saddam Hussein demonstrates how reliant the Iraqi government is on Muqtada al-Sadr