Thursday, June 05, 2003
Simpson berates 'trigger-happy' troops in IraqWar.ru (English)
Weapons hunt as row goes on in BBC: War in Iraq
US soldier killed in Iraq attack in BBC: War in Iraq
Effort to revive Iraqi agriculture in BBC: War in Iraq
'Iraq intelligence probe will take too long' in IraqWar.ru (English)
U.S. plans for interim council face growing resistance in Iraq in IraqWar.ru (English)
Iraq Democracy Watch: "Bremer vs. "The Iraqis"
That's what this unfolding story is turning out to be, with "the Iraqis" referring to the favored "G7" leaders who have been privy to a close relationship with Mr. Bremer in discussions about the future government. (Mind you, there are at least 70 new political parties in Iraq, now.)
The NYT summarizes the split:
The Iraqi political leaders say they will press Mr. Bremer on Friday to call a national conference of delegates broadly selected from across Iraq and to seek its guidance on forming a government. [But] Mr. Bremer has made clear that he does not support a provisional Iraqi government, at least for the foreseeable future. Instead, he has been seeking to put more of an Iraqi face on the occupation authority...
The Asia Times Online comments that the new UN representative in Iraq, Vieira de Mello, "would ... be free to 'contact Iraqi political forces', without having to wait for an OK from proconsul Bremer..." The author goes on to speculate that Bremer may be betting on the deep divisions of the G7 and others to reveal themselves in any independent council. If Mr. de Mello risks throwing his support behind the council, he could be discredited.
So, the palace intrigue takes a higher pitch, with Mr. Bremer looking more and more like the old-style British imperial governor as each day passes -- trying as best he can to install a governing body that looks Iraqi but speaks American. Too bad there's so much else to do in the country. And good thing the UN and all of those selfless NGO's are there, since malnutrition has doubled since the war."