Iraq’s New One Percent Gets Rich, fails to Establish Security (Baquba Bombing kills 20)

Another deadly bombing was conducted this morning in Baquba, Iraq, killing 20 and wounding 60. Radicals detonated it outside a political rally for a small local Sunni Arab party. Diyala province is among Iraq’s most violent, with 560 killed last year. There are violent disputes among its Shiites, Sunni Arabs and Kurds, but also within some of these groups. Al-Qaeda types (the ‘Islamic State of Iraq’) often hit their own Sunnis in revenge for the latter joining in the new Iraqi order.

The violence is related to the upcoming provincial elections in Iraq, which will determine which parties and groups control the country’s 15 provinces and the Kurdistan super-province (which groups three of the former provinces in the north). Some of these provinces are wealthy in natural resources or are strategically important (Diyala abuts Iran).

Security issues continue to bedevil Iraq, despite outward signs of prosperity.

Iraq’s new one percent: VOA reports on how the oil and other money flooding into the country is making the country wealthier but not benefiting most of its people. The money seems to be going to a newly emerged one percent.

In contrast, the Kurdistan region in the northeast of the country has long been relatively protected from the post-invasion power vacuum and has done well economically. CNN reports:

Since Kurds (who speak an Indo-European language ultimately related to English, rather than speaking Arabic) are only about a fifth of Iraq, that they are doing better is another indication of the country’s stratification.

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2 Responses

  1. Iraq, for the most part, has been an artificial state cobbled together after World War I. Saddam Hussein was able to provide security through brute force.

    A fundamental question is: how much longer will Iraq devolve into a failed state before it fragments into separate states?

  2. Iraq’s 1% are reaping the oil wealth. Mission accomplished. Under saddam the wealth was spread around, but that is so anti-capitalist AND un-American.

    As for Iraq’s artificial origin, Germany and Italy started the same way just 50-60 years before Iraq. Will those several small states be viable in an age where we are fighting for the “Last rays of Ancient Sunshine”?

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