Monday, August 22, 2005

Tick Tock

The extended deadline for agreement on a new constitution for Iraq is fast approaching.
Officials are being forced to discuss a further delay, or even the dramatic option of dissolving parliament. Shia, Sunni and Kurdish teams have been unable to agree on key issues including federalism, oil and the role of Islam.
I'm afraid my thoughts from last week seem equally appropriate today. These are major problems. I hate to be a doomsayer but I cannot see how a satisfactory agreement can be reached. It could take months, years even, for a constitution to be agreed. Even if an agreement is reached, it's hard to see how it's going to stop the insurgents and terrorists. And worst of all, it might not happen at all. Just what is our exit strategy if no agreement is forthcoming? Let's be clear. If we leave Iraq in a worse state than when we invaded, the one remaining, already highly questionable justification for the invasion (to liberate the citizens of Iraq from a brutal dictator) will be completely worthless, just like an Iraqi WMD programme.

That our government had the sheer incompetance to get our country involved in this entirely predictable mess would be funny if it wasn't so tragic. Blair should be forced to listen to this noise 24 hours a day for a period no shorter than eternity. Not that there's anything "fine" about this mess though.

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