Skip to comments.The Kurd Card
Posted on 03/11/2006 3:48:23 PM PST by dervish
Lost amid the news of all the bloodletting in Iraq is an important political development: The Kurds have switched sides. In the first parliament after the first set of elections, they allied themselves with the Shiite slate to produce the current Shiite-dominated government led by Ibrahim al-Jafari.
Now the Kurds have joined with the opposition Sunni and secular parties to oppose the Shiite bloc. The result is two large competing coalitions: (a) the Kurd-Sunni-secular bloc, which controls about 140 seats in the 275-seat parliament and would constitute the barest majority, and (b) the Shiite bloc, which itself is a coalition of seven not-always-friendly parties and controls 130 seats, slightly less than a majority.
If only it were that simple, Iraq would have a new, secular-oriented government. But to protect minorities and force the creation of large governing coalitions, the Iraqi constitution essentially requires a two-thirds majority to form a government.
If we had that requirement in the United States, we might still be trying to settle the 2000 election. In Iraq, the result for now is stalemate, which could lead to disaster if the whole system disintegrates because of the impasse. Or it could lead to a more effective, less sectarian government than Jafari's.
The key question is who is going to control the two critical ministries: interior and defense. In Iraq, as in much of the world, interior does not control the national parks. It controls the police. And under the current government it has been under Shiite control and infiltrated by extreme Shiite militias. Some of these militias launched vicious reprisal raids against Sunnis after the bombing of the Golden Mosque in Samarra, jeopardizing the entire project of a national police force exercising legitimate authority throughout the country.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Seems yet again the Paleos are proven to be ignorant Know Nothings. Just consider it Evolution in Action Dinasours.
Sidenote: The kurdish population I believe is the largest ethnic group in the world without a home nation.
" The kurdish population I believe is the largest ethnic group in the world without a home nation."
The reason that that is OK is because they are perceived to be Christian so it's fine to make them bow.
"I never understood why they established their constitution the way they did with a parlimentary system"
It is even worse than that and we can thank the pernicious UN influence under Lahkdar Brahimi for it.
The Iraq system fosters factions. It is like the Lebanese and Israeli systems. It is not the US or British systems.
"The U.S. and Britain have what's known as constituency-based democracy. That is, voters in neighborhoods or districts select a single person to represent them in Congress or Parliament based on whoever wins a plurality of the vote. This system has many virtues, producing stable and effective governments that can be held accountable by voters at the next election. When Prime Minister Tony Blair came to power, for example, the Tory defense and foreign ministers lost not just their cabinet posts but their seats in Parliament--an outcome almost unthinkable under a system of "proportional" representation.
Yet the latter is precisely what Ms. Perelli proposed last week for Iraq. In this system, voters choose not among individual candidates but among parties that are awarded a share of legislative seats based on their percentage of the vote. Proponents say the system better allows all significant voices to be heard. But even in the best of cases--Italy over much of the past 50 years--proportional systems tend to produce unstable governments easily paralyzed by the little parties they have to cobble into a majority coalition. Would-be candidates are beholden to party bosses who determine their place on the electoral list and thus their chances of success.
In Iraq especially, with its many ethnic divisions, the risks of such a system are huge. As much as possible we should be encouraging Iraqis to think of themselves as Iraqis rather than as Kurds or Arabs, Shiites or Sunnis. First-past-the-post elections in Iraqi neighborhoods, many of which are multi-ethnic, would help accomplish this. Where local elections have been held thus far in Iraq, voters have chosen pragmatic and secular figures rather than religious or ethnic extremists.
By contrast, Ms. Perelli's nationwide proportional system will encourage voters and parties to separate themselves along sectarian lines. What's more, where constituency systems tend toward centrist politics as candidates seek a majority, proportional systems empower extremists who could never win outright in any single area but who can garner a significant minority of the vote. Look for the mad Shiite Muqtada al-Sadr, for one, to get elected under these rules."
Why would arabs think that kurds are christians?
If anything, they are sunnies just like the rest of them, just with a different ethnic background.
And Islam, requires them to support fellow muslims, regardless of ethnicity (Mohammad may have crazy, illiterate, and a pedophile, but he also knew you got to make sure you unite your army somehow).
interesting view of the labyrinthine ways of Middle Eastern politics
from a radio show called The Spirit of Things
Muhammad Kamal: Yes, in fact the history of religion in Kurdistan can be divided into two parts, we say pre-Islamic and post-Islamic.
In the pre-Islamic period the Kurds followed various religions. For instance, the Kurds were Ezidis and Zoroastrians, and Judaism, Christianity also were very popular among the Kurds. But when the Kurds were converted in 637, that is during the reign of the second Caliph of Islam, Caliph 'Umar, who was the second successor to the prophet Muhammad, then most of the Kurds became Muslims. But these Ezidis have remained as it is, they were not converted, and they kept their faith very secret. But then Kurds generally became Sunni Muslims and still we have some Kurds who practice, or lets say who are Shi'a Muslims, or 'Alawis in Kurdistan. But the mainstream of Islam in Kurdistan is Sunni Islam.
It's a shock to the UIA who thought democracy was merely majority rule and since they had the largest party they got everything. The Kurds have been under their own democracy for over 10 years and they really know how to play the gaem. This is the most encouraging sign yet.
Yeah, there's going to be a bit of a problem when Sadar goes ballistic, but I think everyone is prepared for that one.
Off topic. I seem to notice that Arab Muslims don't help non-Arab Muslims. I remember when the Indian Ocean tsunami happened, Arab Muslims did not help their fellow Muslims in Southeast Asia, especially from the Gulf states. Yes, I know they are Polynesians. Saddam Hussein invaded Iran, which is ruled by Persian Shiites, to show the Arab world they can take Iran's land. That's why Arabs of all religious faith sided with Iraq. Saddam had non-Muslim Arabs in his government like Tariq Aziz (Michael Yuhanna).
Iran has never been popular with middle eastern countries.
Besides the fact that they are a different ethnicity, sunnis don't even consider shi-ite to be real islam and based on some of the things Al Quada has said, they seem to really hate the shiite religion.....though thats probably just propaganda.
I do remember saudia arab sending money and trying to help out when the tsunami happened, but the other countries didn't seem to really care.
A quick glance over the history of islam does seem to show alot of racial problems internal among it followers (see Afghanistan).
The "kurds" have an agenda, and it doesn't have anything to do with the US, and very much to do with Turkey, our bitter enemies.....according to FR.
Yes, it's huge surprise....unless you read newspapers and the internet....
I was groaning as I read this at the table over breakfast this morning. The "alliance" is just a tactical ploy to push al-Jaafari out as PM, nothing more.
Dragons from the sea....
Your tag line says it all about the Chamberlain liberals in Americas congress.
Your tag line says it all about the Chamberlain liberals in Americas congress.
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