Renewed Iraqi Monarchy a Bad Idea
I’ve heard rumors that the idea of imposing a member of the Hashemite monarchy on Iraq is again making the rounds in Washington. This is a very, very bad idea. Some people think that it will reassure the Sunnis, since the Hashemites are Sunnis. But neither Sunni Arab nationalists nor Sunni Islamists like monarchy. After the impact of Khomeinism, most Shiites are profoundly opposed to the idea. I personally think that it would roil the country and become a focal point of Shiite discontent. (The main reason to bring back a king would be to curb Shiite power as the majority, just as the British did in the first place). Besides, Abdel Rahman Chalabi has already said that Iraqis would make these decisions. Opinion polls suggest that the support for monarchy is less than 25%. It wouldn’t pass a referendum.