Thursday, October 26, 2006

Partition Iraq

Hi All!

I can't understand why this promising idea isn't getting more attention. Present Iraq is lines drawn on a map by the Brits without any regard about the types of people they were throwing together. Read this EXCELLENT history.

The Kurds apparently have defacto seceded from Iraq and is trying to govern itself. The Sunni and Shiite regions should also be separated to try to keep them away from each others' throats.

Apparently one of the problems with partition is how to deal with the oil wealth, which might end up primarily in one of the new states.

I am already getting out of my depth. I'll link to deeper thoughts on this - this is a good one. The idea just seems to make so much sense.




Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes! I believe that Iraq should become a Federation. I wonder how many people realize that the USA started out as a Federation. If our country began that way, why can't Iraq? Baby steps and all that.

4:54 PM  
Blogger George Nielsen said...

Hi Paul,

As for the partition of Iraq, that is something that I thought of years ago. I figure that if each group could control its own country, then the civil war would end. And the oil rich regions would fall in Kurdistan and the relatively stable Shi'ite south of Iraq. Thus oil supplies would be relatively safe.

As we have discussed, I even have advicated the partition of Belgium, my multiple neighbour. (I have lived in France, Germany and the Netherlands.)

However, I have read in several places that partition of Iraq would not be a good idea. In The Economist they write that, although such a partition is not a mad idea, it is a bad idea. That is because the turks would not appreciate an independent Kurdish state on their borders and, more important, many pro-western Arab countries would have a lot to fear. Iran may take advantage of an independent Shi'ite state, which might fall into its orbit. And although Saudi Arabia is a very Islamic country with a Sunni majority, the oil rich Gulf coast of the country is populated by Shi'ites. They may be inspired by an independent southern Iraq and proclaim independence for themselves, thus leaving the rest of Saudi Arabia dirt poor.

If only they had not created Iraq in the first place ...

What could be the solution to the Iraq problem? To press on fir partition despite the above, or what?


3:39 AM  
Blogger George Nielsen said...

Dear Anonymous,

To answer your question: the United States of America has never been Iraq, with a dictatorship followed by strife between two religious groups which terrorised one another. There may have been loyalists and those who wanted independence, but these groups were not concentrated exclusively in any areas, like the Sunnis and Shi'ites.

An idea for partition: to unite southern Iraq with Kuwait, a country with a strong pro-western and relatively liberal regime. During Ottoman times southern Iraq and Kuwait were regrouped in one province (or was it a villayet?).

George Nielsen

9:55 AM  
Blogger George Nielsen said...

Dear Anonymous,

Further to my previous e-mail, I can add the following for your information: the United States of America started as a Confederation. The Articles of Confederation were enacted already in 1777. Therein was stated that the prerogative of the Union was only in the fields of foreign pollicy, war (defence in today's terminology) and frontier affairs.

This Confederation did not work out. It could not raise enough money as it had no rights of taxation, as it relied on voluntary contributions from each state. Each state could impose tariffs and customs duties on products from another state. Therefore the Constitution of the United States was enacted in 1788, thus transforming the country from a Confederation into a Federation.

What does that have to do with Iraq? I believe that one size does not fit all. If the Articles off Confederation are introduced in Iraq then the country will de facto be dissolved. I doubt whether they would introduce a Constitution turning the country into a Federation. If we want Iraq to be a Federation it must in my opinion start as such, or as a Unitary State. Belgium was for 160 years a Unitary State but has recently been transformed into a Federation.

George Nielsen

11:40 PM  

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