Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Bush Screws Up Iraqi Constitution

He's done everything else wrong, why should this be any different? Seems the pressure Bush and Condi are putting so much pressure on the Iraqis to finish a constitution, it is causing a backlash.

Reuters has details:

The United States is pushing Iraqi leaders hard to reach agreement on a draft constitution but U.S. experts on Iraq warned on Monday that too much pressure could backfire and undermine the leadership's credibility.

Condi and Bush are pretending that the Iraqis are in charge, but that's not quite accurate:
But some U.S.-based Iraq analysts disagreed and criticized the United States for piling too much pressure on all sides to reach agreement and said it had made Iraqi politicians' jobs more difficult.

"Clearly the deadline is not working as there are still such big issues outstanding and putting pressure on them to meet the timetable is probably causing more division among the Iraqis than consensus," said Iraq expert David Phillips of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Middle East specialist Shibley Telhami said he thought the United States was playing too big a role in helping draft the constitution and this posed a credibility problem for the current Iraqi leaders.

"The U.S. ambassador there is very visible in his meetings over the constitution. There is the impression that the United States is driving this, and that is not a good thing," said Telhami of the Brookings Institution.

And there are those who don't think the constitution will make a difference.
"By now I don't think that progress on the constitution will have one iota of impact, and even if they come up with a compromise agreement, implementing it is another story," [Phillips] said.

Why are we there?