the Disillusioned kid
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Thursday, June 10, 2004

I've written previously about why Iyad Allawi is a dubious choice for the position of Iraqi PM. As Rahul Mahajan notes, "it's now official becuse it's in the [New York] Times" (you'll need to register to read the article, but it's free). The "Paper of Record" had a report which considers information from various intelligence sources who recall his Iraqi national Accord (INA) carrying out bombings and sabotage in Baghdad, although "whether the bombings actually killed any civilians could not be confirmed because, as a former C.I.A. official said, the United States had no significant intelligence sources in Iraq then." In War Plan Iraq, Milan Rai considers the attacks and concludes that they may have killed as many as 100 people.

The article comments that when appinted last week, Allawi claimed
his first priority would be to improve the security situation by stopping bombings and other insurgent attacks in Iraq — an idea several former officials familiar with his past said they found "ironic."

"Send a thief to catch a thief," said Kenneth Pollack, who was an Iran-Iraq military analyst for the C.I.A. during the early 1990's and recalled the sabotage campaign.
There is indeed an horrific irony to the whole thing.

The article also mentions suggestions that "while he was still a member of the ruling Baath Party in the early 1970's, [Allawi] may have spied on Iraqi students studying in London." Insinuating that his role within the party was far from passive, a conclusions which would raise serious questions about his fitness to lead post-Saddam Iraq.

The one thing it doesn't consider is the campaign apparently waged by the INA against the Iraqi National Congress (INC, the umbrella group of anti-Saddam organisations of which the INA was a member). This involved plans for the assasination of INC leader Ahmed Chalabi and an attack on the INC headquarters in Iraqi Kurdistan.

As I've said before, none of this inspires confidence that this man can foster peace, stability or self-determination in Iraq. His recent calls for the "Multinational Force" to support the Interim Government's efforts to rule the country, suggest that his appointment may be much more beneficial for the Americans than for his fellow Iraqis.

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