Waiting for Mam Jalal

September 10, 2012

While waiting for Talabani (Mam Jalal) to use his magic wand on Iraq’s political leaders, almost all sides are continuing to do more of the same — what they always do at times of crisis.

They consolidate positions by rallying people, escalate matters by making rash military decisions or just wait for Mam Jalal.

The recent meeting of political parties with the president of the Kurdistan Region — about Maliki’s formation of the Dijla force — is one of a series of meetings that will further consolidate the stalemate of the political situation and makes the prospect of any agreement more difficult. The message here clearly suggests that talks with Baghdad, or with Maliki, are conditional on the dissolution of the Dijla force.

A force like Dijla would further militarize the disputed territories and allow for more security breaches at a time when the issue of Kirkuk and other disputed areas is a political one that cannot be solved with guns.

The formation of the Dijla force, however, is not the real issue. The failure of Maliki to see the problem and think that he can fix anything through military means is the real issue. This attitude of the PM should be exposed and talked about to the public — the Arab public before the Kurdish.

But all this aside, the real problem for the Kurds may not be in the creation and handling of the Dijla force. The real problem lies with keeping the outstanding issues between the two cities on the backburner and not making any serious effort to tackle them through direct talks between the concerned people of the governments in Erbil and Baghdad.

This process should be depoliticized by having the government deal with negotiations in Baghdad and having the political parties give their final endorsement of the agreement. The way things are now, the political parties have started the process but the government is still not completely involved in dealing with Baghdad. Yet another process is underway in parliament to create a council to negotiate with Baghdad.

Regardless of the body that takes the lead, an institutionalized framework is needed to deal with Baghdad. Then the issues of Maliki or the prime minister of the day can be separated. The other benefit of this would be that Kurdish-Baghdad issues — that are directly connected to the livelihood of the people — will not become part of someone else’s agenda in their conflict with Maliki.

The starting point to all this comes with the conviction that dialogue is the only way forward. Although difficult, the imminent return of President Jalal Talabani may present an opportunity for the start of the political dialogue with Baghdad.

But his job will only be as difficult or as easy as the various conflicting parties want to make it. He has proven in the past that bringing everyone to the table is not hard for him to do. The difficulty starts after the first minute of the meeting when issues like the Dijla force or Maliki’s security mentality or Kurdish oil contracts are discussed.

    farouk younis says:

    المشكلة بسيطة من سيقنع Talabani to use his magic wand
    ان كانت لديه تلكم العصى

    Anonymous says:

    من سيقنع الرايس
    to use his magic wand

    follow me
    mail me