Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Is Chalabi exploiting (and amplifying) Shias' fear of Baathists?

'Chalabi is no. 3 on the INA’s list for Baghdad. That makes him one of its principal movers and shakers, as he had been in the past before falling out with Abdel-Aziz al-Hakim. By using the De-Baath commission to nullify the candidacy of 511 politicians, especially from Maliki’s and Bolani’s lists, he scored a big victory towards placing the Anti-Baath issue at the forefront of electoral politics. I’m also sure that he knew that the American administration would rise to the bait: Joe Biden’s attempts to micromanage this crises only serves to make the issue bigger, and the bigger it is, the better for the INA running on this controversy as their sole ‘gotcha’ against Maliki. It is interesting that Basra’s Muzahim al-Kana’an, who in the last election got an exemption from De-Baathication because he was running on Chalabi’s 2005 slate, has been included in the latest AJC list. Al-Kana’an is running with Bolani this time (…note that Bolani also ran on Chalabi’s list back then).' --Nibras Kazimi

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