Afternoon news items....
Iraq's Maliki Refuses To Go: Says Only He Has The "Right To Represent State", Accuses US Of Intervening
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 08/11/2014 14:44 -0400
And it was going so well until Joe Biden called. Moments ago the PM who refuses to hand in his resignation spoke to the nation in a TV address. In short: he isn't going anywhere.
- MALIKI SAYS AL-ABADI NOMINATION IS LEGALLY WORTHLESS
- MALIKI SAYS IRAQ FACES A SERIOUS CONSTITUTIONAL VIOLATION
- MALIKI SAYS U.S. STATE DEPT. TOOK SIDE OF THOSE VIOLATING LAW
- MALIKI SAYS NO ONE BUT HIM HAS RIGHT TO REPRESENT STATE, DAWA
- MALIKI SAY PEOPLE, SECURITY FORCES ARE IN A HOLY BATTLE
And the punchline:
- IRAQ'S MALIKI SAYS "WE WILL FIX MISTAKE" AFTER UNCONSTITUTIONAL NOMINATION OF NEW PM
And from Al Arabiya:
Is Anyone In Control? The Iraq "Post Coup" Confusion Deepens
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 08/11/2014 13:08 -0400
While the US is alternating between bombing the north of Iraq, and occasionally paradropping MREs and jugs of water to keep up the "noble" facade of intervention, it is very much unclear if Iraq currently has a government and in fact, who is in charge. As reported yesterday, current PM al-Maliki, seemingly unhappy with relinquishing power when a new Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi was chosen, decided to conduct what many described as a military coup and encircled the residence of the president. Since then things have gotten quite confusing.
As Reuters summarizes, "Iraq's president named a new prime minister to replace Nuri al-Maliki on Monday, urging him to form a broad government that can stem communal bloodshed, but it was unclear whether Maliki would bow to U.S. and Iranian pressure to step aside. A Shi'ite Muslim blamed by erstwhile allies in Washington and Tehran as well as Baghdad for driving the alienated Sunni minority into revolt, Maliki deployed loyal militias and special forces in the capital on Monday after making a defiant speech accusing the head of state of abusing the constitution.
There was no immediate reaction from Maliki to the naming of Haider al-Abadi as prime minister. However, Maliki's son-in-law, a close political ally, told Reuters that he would seek to overturn the nomination in the courts.
President Fouad Masoum asked Abadi, a leader of Maliki's Islamic Dawa Party, to lead an administration that can win the support of a parliament elected in April. In remarks broadcast on television, Masoum, an ethnic Kurd, urged him to "form a broader-based government" over the next month.
Abadi, who spent decades in exile in Britain during the rule of Sunni dictator Saddam Hussein, promptly assumed he was in control and urged national unity against the "barbaric" Islamic State. However, the Maliki faithful have little desire to go gentle into that good night: "We will not stay silent," Maliki's son-in-law Hussein al-Maliki said. "The nomination is illegal and a breach of the constitution. We will go to the federal court to object."
And just to complete the confusion, this is where the US got involved:
After Washington endorsed Masoum's attempts to break three months of post-election political deadlock that have hamstrung Baghdad's response to the Islamic State, Secretary of State John Kerry called on Maliki not to resort to force or "stir the waters" when Iraqis were seeking a change of leader.In pointed remarks, he said: "The government formation process is critical in terms of sustaining stability and calm in Iraq and our hope is that Mr. Maliki will not stir those waters."There will be little international support of any kind whatsoever for anything that deviates from the legitimate constitution process that is in place and being worked on now."As police and elite armed units, many equipped and trained by the United States, locked down the capital's streets, Kerry added: "There should be no use of force, no introduction of troops or militias in this moment of democracy for Iraq."...Before Abadi's nomination, a U.S. State Department spokeswoman reaffirmed support for a "a prime minister who can represent the aspirations of the Iraqi people by building a national consensus and governing in an inclusive manner"."We reject any effort to achieve outcomes through coercion or manipulation of the constitutional or judicial process," she said in a statement, adding that the United States "fully supports" Masoum as guarantor of Iraq's constitution.
This culminated when none other than VP Biden called in: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden congratulated Haider al-Abadi on Monday for being Iraq's designated new prime minister and pledged U.S. support for an inclusive Iraqi government, the White House said. "The prime minister-designate expressed his intent to move expeditiously to form a broad-based, inclusive government capable of countering the threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and building a better future for Iraqis from all communities," the White House said in a statement about the telephone call. "The vice president relayed President Obama's congratulations and restated his commitment to fully support a new and inclusive Iraqi government, particularly in its fight against ISIL," it said.
Of course, if left on its own, the situation would likely have promptly subsided with Maliki quietly exiting stage left. However, now that the US has made its intentions quite clear, and considering the US tracked record in recent years of picking the "winning candidate", suddenly all bets are off.
Then again, it may no longer matter just who, if anyone, is in charge: on Monday, police said the fighters had seized the town of Jalawla, 115 km (70 miles) northeast of Baghdad, after driving out the forces of the autonomous Kurdish regional government.
Because should ISIS take over Baghdad, watch as that that aggressively suppressed "Iraq geopolitical risk" crude premium soars through the roof.
Finally, it is not as if ISIS has no leverage: recall that the nuclear option before the jihadists is still on the table. Should all else fail, it can just blow up the Mosul dam it took over in the past week, flood the Tigris plain and countless Iraqi cities, culminating with Baghdad ending up under 16 feet of water, something which would make life for Joe Biden's son, Hunter, who may then also be named on the board of some leading Iraqi energy company in addition to Ukraine's Burisma, quite unbearable.
IS told Mosul Dam workers they'd get paid if stayed on job Want power to continue to areas under their control http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-08-11/islamic-state-funds-caliphate-with-mosul-dam-as-terror-spreads.html …
Pentagon official: US conducted 15 airstrikes in Iraq using F18s, F16s, and Predators, also have 60 surveillance aircraft involved
Mayville: Task to protect US facilities & citizens, protect US aircraft & target #ISIS laying siege to Erbil. No plans to expand. #Iraq
Iraq Maliki imposed house arrest on all officials inside the Green Zone in Baghdad including minister & the kurdish president Fuad Masum
Maliki refuses to recognise al-Abadi as PM nominee because he's the head of Rule of Law coalition https://twitter.com/AlArabiya_Brk/status/498804905822654465 … he's pushing it.
BREAKING: #Iraq president asks Haider al-Abadi to form new government: spokesman http://bit.ly/1uhQjh0
Al-Maliki nominates Tareq Najm to form the new government in Baghdad
Senior Shia Islamist politico from deep inside the Green Zone: Maliki will appear on TV again at 3PM following Abbadi nomination - "trouble
#BREAKING: National Iraqi alliance chooses Haydar Abbadi as a candidate for Iraq's Prime Ministerial post. http://fb.me/2FDWGqeJV
US officials have left the embassy in Baghdad #Iraq
Iraqi rebels are about to enter Samarra #Iraq
Al-Maliki asks his army to "defend the constitution"! #Iraq
Al-Maliki's slaves in Baghdad are shouting "Allah - Al-Maliki" #Iraq
Al-Maliki's loyal forces have closed Abu Nawwas, al-Jamhouriyya and al-Sa`doun roads in Baghdad city #Iraq
A judge in the Federal Court says "We haven't asked al-Maliki's coalition to form a government". Confusion? #Iraq
We got a copy of the Federal Court's statement that asks al-Maliki's coalition to form a new government in #Iraq
+20 embassies in Baghdad have closed. Many diplomats have left the capital #Iraq
Iraqi rebels destroy 3 cargo planes and 7 vehicles in Baghdad International Airport. +20 Maliki troops were killed #Iraq
An explosion kills military officers in al-Rashidiyya in Baghdad #Iraq
Iraqi rebels destroy an armored vehicle in south Baghdad #Iraq
Tanks on the streets of Baghdad. There will be no post-US peaceful transition of power. The "democracy" they brought didn't outlast them.
Kerry's reference to 'the Shia' as choosing candidate for PM is 1 of the reasons Iraq is in such a mess- Iraqis should form govt, not a sect
Kerry: no support for Baghdad if Maliki violates the constitution. Obama: we will arm the Kurds. The breakup of Iraq continues.
#ISIS militants defeat #Kurds in #Iraqi town of Jalawla northeast of #Baghdad http://ow.ly/AbnEs #MiddleEast
Retweeted by Joel Wing
.@MemlikPasha Reports that the Pesh lost Jalawla' after several hours intense fighting, w/ heavy casualties on both sides 1/2
via @AP: Senior US officials: Obama administration has begun directly arming Kurds in #Iraq #KRG #peshmerga
100s of pro-#Maliki demonstrators were escorted into Firdous Square on top of about a dozen military trucks. They chanted "we r w/u Maliki!"
Iraqis and Syrians can cross the Iraqi-Syrian border without passports. ISIS doesn't recognize the artificial borders #Syria #Iraq
Retweeted by Michael Knights
Sources tell me National Alliance first asked Tariq Najm but he refused & said Maliki would have to step down first (that's not happening