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Nouri Al-Maliki's military overthrow of the constitution

August 13, 2014 at 9:17 am

As was expected, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki deployed his personal military forces at Baghdad’s bridges, intersections and other important sites in anticipation of one thing: the possibility that someone aside from him could be nominated for the presidency. The message that Al-Maliki wants to send is quite clear and that is he is prepared to wage a full-blown military coup in the event that another individual is nominated to occupy for his position, regardless of where that person might come from and what agency he may represent.

Aside from his use of military force to cover up what he has done in writing via the Iraqi Federal Court, Al-Maliki has also issued a formal complaint against the President of the Republic, Fuad Masum, accusing him of violating the constitution. I do not know what constitutional article Prime Minister Al-Maliki based his complaint on given that his position as prime minister has long been expired. He does not have the right to monitor the President of the Republic to begin with because his role as prime minister limits his powers to the House of Representatives. Since when has Nouri Al-Maliki abided by the terms of the constitution anyway?

Nouri Al-Maliki will not succeed in his military coup not only because it is pointless and unjustified but also because it fails to demonstrate any empathy and garner external support. The lesson to be learned here is not embodied by the coup’s military force and abilities, rather in whether or not Al-Maliki will succeed in imposing his point of view on the constitutional institutions that have announced their rejection of his plans and governmental desires. It will not be easy for Al-Maliki to change his position in the president’s office, the House of Representatives and the federal court.

Consequently, Haidar Al-Abadi of the Dawa Party, who currently serves as the vice president of the council of representatives, has been working to form a new government in spite of Al-Maliki and this happened after the Shia alliance began to exercise its rights as the majority bloc by abandoning Al-Maliki. Regardless of all this, Nouri Al-Maliki decided to pull out a red card and announce his veto of the council’s decision rather than wave a white flag. He insists on nominating himself in spite of everyone around him, a decision that has led to more criticism of him than ever before, especially after the alternative candidate also came from the Dawa party and the united bloc.

Al-Maliki’s failure has been further magnified by the fact that his complaint against the president did not yield any concrete results. Furthermore, his attempts to influence the media did not result in any changes. Al-Maliki also failed to fully influence the Shia bloc, which strongly regard themselves as the majority party. More importantly, Al-Maliki’s military threats have failed to influence any party on the ground. After all, one must not forget God’s promise when he told us that the work of the corrupt would not bear fruit.

Due to his long history of poor governance, it is expected that Al-Maliki will try to put many obstacles in the path of any nominee for prime minister and he will also attempt to impose many restrictions on the Shia alliance. However, he will not achieve the gains that he is aiming for in this arena and these attempts will simply be remembered as additions to his bad record of dealing with opponents.

Let us consider the Nouri Al-Maliki era to be extinct, never to return through any person or in any form. Let us learn a lesson from this mistake by refusing to switch to another Al-Maliki or any politician from his coalition and party because there is a possibility that Al-Maliki will try to communicate with his replacement so that he or she can also be remembered for their corruption and sectarian policies.

We, the Iraqi people, did not revolt in all provinces only to repeat the experiences of Jaafari-Maliki in 2006. We revolted for a cause and we should continue to revolt until we see changes unfold on the ground. The road may be long but we needed to dispose of Al-Maliki in any case and this has been done.

Translated from Al-Sharq newspaper, 12 August, 2014


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