Is al-Maliki Creating a Personal Militia in Iraq?

The USG Open Source Center translates an article from the Kurdish press complaining that Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has been busily creating his own tribally based private militias, called ‘Isnad,’ and is using them to project his authority through brute force in various parts of Iraq.

Iraq: What after Al-Maliki’s (Support) Councils?
Kurdistani Nuwe
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Document Type: OSC Translated Text

Iraq: What after Al-Maliki’s (Support) Councils?

Text of report by Iraqi Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) newspaper Kurdistani Nuwe on 12 November

Article by journalist Latif Fatih Faraj: Kirkuk, Militia and Al-Maliki

Throughout its own history, Kirkuk has never had so much police force. For it has 11,000 policemen, apart from the army and different sorts of security forces and other institutions. Instead of opening special courses and workshops in military awareness, how to deal with the citizens and in the field of activities, instead of strengthening them with advanced and modern weapons and arsenals, instead of reminding them that they are the servants of the people and not impediments and obstacles before the freedom of the citizens, instead of cooperation, organization and deepening the spirit of brotherhood and peaceful compatibility amongst them, efforts are made on dividing them, turning them into party members and destroying the relations among them.

Not only that, the prime minister of Iraq has been for a long time busy creating his own special militia named (Isnad) ‘Support’. The Isnad force, which nobody knows what Maliki wants it for, he wishes to deploy it everywhere in this country without calling it a militia. This will turn into an absolute question for all of us when Al-Maliki and without taking into account the change in Iraq as well as the role of the other political, ethnic and religious components in Iraq speaks in a rough manner of the centre’s gaining strength. As if that were not enough, he has a project for the reoccupation of the severed regions and only God knows where else he has project so as to expel the Kurds from the delicate places, or, at least, to take back authority from the Kurds and enfeeble them, Al-Maliki is trying all methods of harassment. This is while we are still determined to take the dilapidated ship ‘Iraq’ to the shores of security. I know that more than any other time now Al-Maliki should be ousted and expelled from power, if he does not deal with the conditions carefully.

Al-Maliki’s threats in the formation of the ‘Support’ council, picking on Kirkuk and his constant threatening looks are not solely directed towards Kurds. Therefore a council for the confrontation of the crisis has to be thought of, a council that can set limits to Al-Maliki and contain him. In these new circumstances, they make us forget one fight for the sake of another fight, neglect one question for another. Presumably, this is what Al-Maliki wishes. In the game of trimming Khanaqin’s wings, he put back Jalawla, Sa’diyah and their neighbouring regions under the Iraqi army’s control. And now he is coveting for Jabara. All this and the naive Kurds are against each other in many issues. This is conspicuous in our policies and measures here and there and even the blind can perceive them.

Today the preliminaries of the same policy of trimming are in sight, particularly what is taking place in Khurmatu, Daquq, Huwayjah and the other places. Efforts are incessantly being made to make the components of these places look dubiously at each other. At present, Al-Maliki’s activities cannot be disregarded. Besides, approximately one month ago, Dr Adil Abd-al-Mahdi candidly and openly pointed to the threats.

At the time, I expressed very early my own observations on Article 140. Now that Al-Maliki’s dream in passing that period of time came true and the election law for the governorates’ councils is on the right track, the beginning of a division is appearing in the horizon and Maliki is busy experimenting with the other paths, it is time we asked, then who can identify the differences between Saddam’s Al-Quds Army and Dr Nuri al-Maliki’s the ‘Support Councils’? It is a simple question, is it not?

(Description of Source: Al-Sulaymaniyah Kurdistani Nuwe in Kurdish — daily newspaper published by Iraqi Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK))

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