Monday, August 15, 2005

Iraq clusterfuck: More proof that we're winning! 


Not really.

Iraq's parliament, pushed to the brink of a midnight deadline, gave negotiators an extra week on Monday to complete a draft constitution after weeks of intensive talks failed to bridge sectarian and ethnic rifts.

In the end on Monday, refusal by leaders of the Sunni minority to grant wide autonomy -- and control of oil income -- to the southern Shi'ite majority appeared to break any accord.

Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari, a Shi'ite Islamist, said the sticking points had been federalism and sharing out revenues.
(via AP)

As Bob and Ray once said: "There in stately splendor, far above the squalid village below, they fight their petty battles over power and money."

Except the splendor isn't so stately:

Delayed again by a typical Baghdad power blackout, and with nerves frayed after what had sounded like mortar blasts nearby earlier in the evening, the National Assembly voted unanimously for a motion from the speaker to grant just a week, to August 22.

Meanwhile, Bush dismounted Condi his exercise bike to emit a handler-crafted statement:

Bush Downplays Constitution Delay
"Their efforts are a tribute to democracy and an example that difficult problems can be solved peacefully through debate, negotiation, and compromise," Bush said in a statement.
(via AP

Yeah, like Inerrant Boy knows what "debate, negotiation, and compromise" even mean. Gimme a break.

Translation: He couldn't muscle what He wanted from the Iraqis.

So tell me again what the "noble cause" is? I keep forgetting.

UPDATE Meanwhile, our Ambassador in Iraq thought he could speak all on his own without checking in with Dear Leader in Hellmouth,TX. And what's his alibi? The weather. The AFP headline is priceless:

Iraq misses constitution deadline, US ambassador blames weather
"We recognize that the three days lost because of the recent sandstorm set back the schedule of deliberations," [US ambassador Zalmay] Khalilzad said in a statement,
(via AFP)

But don't worry, there's no, um, crisis:

Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari downplayed a possible political crisis after the failure to meet the deadline.

"This is not a political crisis, but just a problem and can be overcome," he told reporters after the parliament session which was also attended by Khalilzad.

He said the main issues that were unresolved were federalism and distribution of national wealth.

Uh, right. Everything's resolved except who gets the money and who has the power. Damn, I've forgotten what that noble cause was, again. Funny.

And I grant that the sandstorm was awful. Still, when the Framers were writing the Constitution in Philly, in Independence Hall, they nailed the windows shut. And in Philly, in the summer, that's no picnic. Something tells me that if there was an agreement to be had, a sandstorm wouldn't have gotten in the way....

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