A Preliminary Election
The plan to hand over the power to an Iraqi government in July 2004 created a lot of debates. All the Iraqis have the right to be involved directly in deciding the future of their country but they should not be influenced by the political intention of some of the regional and international powers who don't like to see prosperous, democratic and free Iraq. The regional powers that fear a real democratic system in Iraq will push forcefully some groups in and outside Iraq to try to prevent or at least cripple any democratic system as much as they can. There are signs of a change in the tactics of these powers to achieve their goals after they failed to do so by the terrorist attacks. The same people who exaggerated the attacks as if it is going to bring back Saddam's regime are now concentrate on the religious, ethnic and national issues to divide and encourage unrest in Iraq. They may take a comment by a little clergy or a mullah and make it a big story to serve their sick intention!
All Iraqis should be aware and vigilant about the new tactics. They should unite under one motive which is (IRAQ IS FOR IRAQIS). Iraqis are Iraqis and not Shiite or Sunnis or Kurds or Arabs or others at least during the present time. Iraqis for the first time in 35 years can talk freely. This may cause a rebound phenomenon after 35 years from oppression into complete freedom! The situation will then gradually calm down and the people will pass from the post delivery CRY status into maturation periods by which they will pass into a sitting then crawling then standing and walking positions. We think since 9 April 2003 after the birth of the new Iraq by the most serious and extensive caesarean section the maturation process is moving forward in spite of many hurdles. Democracy is not something that you can impose by force. It needs proper system and the people should be prepared to carry it out as well as to respect its outcome. It needs parties with clear agenda about the health, education, economy, social, and political and other issues. To make these clear you need a media to reach to the people and to identify those who are going to stand for the election. Maturation process on the other hand will be pushed forward by pushing the process of reconstruction forward.
The Iraqis should not look to the nominated candidates from their ethnic or national status like Kurd or Arab or Shiite or Sunni but they should look to their agenda about the important issues of the country. Iraqis needs to be aware that they should not listen to the sick intentions of the others.
During the history of recent Iraq there were 46 governments. Only 6 out of them were led by Shiite Primeministers! Some of the Arabs think that this is a history which should stay the same. It is like their views about leaders for life and when die pass the power to the sons! History is important but to learn from it not to stick inside it. The Iraqis should ignore the sick intention and look to the agenda and not the people.
Mr Amir Tahri has recently (16 Jan 2004) wrote an interesting article in Asharq Al-Awsat entitled as I translate it freely (Required To Hand Power to Iraqis Quickly: Sistani is right and Coalition is wrong, and there is a need for a political road map).
Amir Tahri rightly concluded that Mr Sistani is a man not after political position and he is not stiff man but if things explained and discussed with him he will change his mind. He had no political party and don't like to do so and he is not Khomeni but he was and still against Khomeni's views about involving religion in political.
Mr Paul Bremer commented today that he hold a great respect to Mr Sistani. Some of the Arab and non Arab media try to manipulate Mr Sistani issue and inject it with poison. I am sure Mr Paul Bremer aware about this and his comments today sending one message to different groups on the same time. Mr Sistani when asked by a group of Iraqis about his idea regarding the new government he said that (THE IDEAL THING IS TO DO AN ELECTION AND MANY EXPERITS SAY THAT IT COULD BE DONE IN THE COMING MONTHS WITH AN ACCEPTABLE LEVEL OF TRANSPARENCY AND CREDIBILITY). The media and some interpreted Mr Sistani's answer wrongly or intentionally. This is a wrong and serious situation indeed. Sistani is not a political leader but he is highly respected at least from the Shiite. He doesn't like to be Khomeni as those with sick intentions trying to show him in their media like Al Arabyia and Al Jazeera and others.
Mr Tahri in his article said that Mr Sistani only gave his idea by telling that the ideal way to put a government is by election and if some one can persuade him that the reality now needs a different way until things get ready he will change his mind! I add to that if you ask any one he will tell that the ideal way to put a government is by election, exactly what Mr Sistani said.
To conclude things election is better than selection but the first needs certain conditions which are not ready yet! Selection on the other hand will cast many doubts about the legality of the new government and it will be accused by the same ones who have the bad intentions as a poppet. Same thing happened with the GC. It is even not of the interest for Mr GWB in the next election to see a poppet government in Iraq.
The best thing therefore, is to have an interim election for an interim government to stay for a decided period of time say for 1 year by which the way should be set aside for new constitution and census and then election. The shape of the new government and the election will be determined by consultation with different parties and Mr Sistani should be consulted as one respected leader as well. This interim election can be used as a trial to avoid mistakes in the final one and to get the people to know how to vote! The only vote that the Iraqis knew was the 100% vote for Saddam.
IT IS BETTER TO CARRY OUT AN INTERIM ELECTION NOW ACCORDING TO THE EASIEST WAY AVALIABLE TO ELECT AN INTERIM GOVERNMENT FOR A SPECIFIC PERIOD OF TIME 1-2 YEARS. ONE OF THE TOP AGENDA OF THIS GOVERNMENT IS TO PREPARE A SYSTEM FOR A REAL ELECTION RPOMPIT BY THE DATE. THE Interim ELECTION SHOULD BE OBSERVED BY THE UN AND INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY. THIS WILL MAKE IT LEGAL AND RESPECTED.