IN his press conference yesterday, the US ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad revealed, with the US commander, General Casey standing next to him, that the US has given its Iraqi puppets a timetable for carrying out ‘key tasks’ in the next year.
Khalilzad said: ‘Success in Iraq is possible and can be achieved on a realistic timetable,’ adding that more than Iraq itself was at stake and that ‘The outcome will profoundly shape the wider struggle and in turn the security of the world.’
Khalilzad said Iraqi leaders had agreed to a ‘timeline’ to reduce violence, and that a ‘national compact’ should be in place in the next 12 months if the Iraqi government lives up to agreements.
There was nothing to suggest in his remarks of any trend to seek to get Syrian and Iranian support for the US effort.
Khalilzad identified Iran and Syria as backers of extremist forces, allies of Al Qaeda that are spilling blood and preventing the stabilisation of the country.
He said that the US strategy ‘has three key elements. First, we’re inducing Iraqi religious and political leaders who can call and influence armed groups in Baghdad to agree to stop sectarian violence.
‘Second, we are helping Iraqi leaders to complete a national compact. Political forces must make difficult decisions in the coming weeks to reach agreement on a number of outstanding issues on which Iraqis differ. Enacting an oil law that will share the profits of Iraq’s resources in a way that unites the country. This is of critical importance.
‘Amending the constitution to make all Iraqis understand that their children will be guaranteed democratic rights . . . Implementing a plan to address militias and death squads, setting the date for provincial elections and increasing the credibility and the capability of Iraqi forces.
‘Iraqi leaders have agreed a timeline for making the hard decisions needed to resolve these issues.
‘The third element is persuading Sunni insurgents to lay down their arms and accept national reconciliation.’
Khalilzad’s closing words were: ‘Iraqi leaders must step up to achieve key political and security milestones on which they have agreed.’
However, the Kurdish and Shia parties in the puppet regime have not the slightest intention of sharing ‘their’ oil with the rest of Iraq, and are bent on dividing up the country into three entities – having already passed the necessary legislation. The death squads currently in operation are their death squads and come from the Badr Brigade, the Ministry of the Interior, the police and from different puppet army factions. The puppet regime bosses cannot eradicate what they created, with the blessing of the US and the UK.
The implication of Khalilzad’s offer to the puppets is that refusal will mean the end of the alleged ‘democratic experiment’ and the end of the puppet regime.
The effect of the ultimatum on the puppets will be diverse. Some will set out to wipe out the death squads and militias of their opponents within the regime, while others will put hundreds of millions of government dollars in their foreign bank accounts as they get ready to flee the country, as some have already done.
What is being discussed in Baghdad is that Bush, having ended his flirtation with ‘Iraqi democracy’, will now resort to the old tried and tested methods and seek out an army ‘strongman’ to organise a military coup to overthrow the government of the Green Zone.
It is being said that a number of generals in the former army have already been consulted about whether they would be prepared to play such a role, and in particular rid Iraq of the pro-Iranian forces.
The former Interim Premier, Allawi, now residing in London, has already had to deny that his transfer to the UK was to assist in organising such a coup.
For the insurgents the sight of the puppets being hung out to dry by their masters will signal that now is the time to unite all of the Iraqi people in a major drive to force the occupiers out of Iraq.