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(DV) Whitney: Thinking the Unthinkable -- Opening Up Negotiations With the Iraqi Resistance







Thinking the Unthinkable: Opening Up Negotiations
With the Iraqi Resistance 

by Mike Whitney
October 27, 2005

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The purpose of the Iraqi constitution is to legitimize the American occupation and establish the legal framework for dividing the country. It does nothing for the Iraqi people except exacerbate sectarian and religious animosities. Only a fool would accept a constitution that is designed to break up the nation. That is a contradiction of the basic principle the underscores such documents.

Solid majorities in three Sunni provinces rejected the constitution even though according to leaders in the Association of Muslim Scholars, “the Americans fraudulently turned Sunni “no” votes into “yes” votes.”  (NY Times)

Mr. Kubaisy, representative of the AMS said, “The constitution was part of an American conspiracy to shred this country into pieces…. This constitution will be terminated when they leave.”

Kubaisy’s remarks reflect the sentiments of the vast majority of Sunnis as well as the 82% of Iraqis who are now “strongly opposed” to the ongoing presence of occupation troops. (Poll by British Government, 10-15-05)

The purpose of a constitution is to unify the people under a common commitment to civil liberties, human rights, and the rule of law. All of these are sadly lacking in the Iraqi version, which is primarily designed to strengthen the role of religion in government and allow for regional autonomy. The division of Iraq should not be revered as a “constitution”, but partition.

More importantly, the constitution lacks any real credibility because the nation is at war and that conflict poses a direct challenge to the survival of the regime. If representative government requires the consent of the governed, then it naturally follows that massive civil unrest and resistance signal the unwillingness of the people to accept the authority of the government.

The current violence in Iraq suggests widespread rejection of the American puppet state. This cannot be resolved by edicts from Washington, but by political dialogue with the warring parties -- negotiations with the resistance.

Currently, the Bush administration is working behind the scenes to form a bogus Sunni organization called the Iraqi Concord Front (ICF) which pretends to represent the political interests of Sunnis. The group will field candidates for the December elections for the National Assembly and work to disrupt the objectives of the Iraqi resistance. Already, one of the group’s leaders, Alla Makki, has stated that he will try to convince resistance fighters to lay down their weapons and join the political process.

“The political process”?

There will be no “political process” until members of the Bush administration sit down to negotiations with representatives of the Iraqi National Resistance. As of now there is no dialogue and, therefore, no political process.

Eventually, the administration will see that Iraq cannot be subjugated by jackboot tactics and imperial exploitation. Regardless of Washington’s penchant for the cruel and inhuman treatment of its prisoners, or its insatiable craving for Falluja-type retribution; the logistics do not favor success. Pipelines to the north have been sabotaged again, stopping the flow of oil for an estimated three weeks. The battle to disrupt crucial oil supplies will eventually force negotiations. Although the lives of innocent Iraqis have never mattered to the White House cabal, oil certainly has. The world’s tenuous economic situation will dictate policy, and within two years, members of the Bush administration will be joined at the bargaining table with members of Iraq’s disparate resistance.

The administration could do us all a favor by anticipating the inevitable failure of their misguided crusade and calling for a total and immediate ceasefire, followed by negotiations with representatives of the Iraqi resistance, and an unconditional commitment to withdraw all foreign troops.

The issues of reparations, reconstruction and war crimes can be dealt with at some mutually agreed upon future date, but for now, let’s stop the killing.

Mike Whitney lives in Washington state, and can be reached at:

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