Unconventional thinking about the Middle East.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Bush-Hashemi Meeting Re-Scheduled For Next Week?

It seems that the White House, in a bid to answer accusations of leaning towards the Shi'as in its Iraq policy revision and to lend some symmetry to the recent Hakim visit, is moving up a meeting between Iraqi Vice-President Tariq al-Hashemi (Sunni) and President George Bush (...urrmmm, Protestant) that had been initially scheduled for early January to next week.

Heard in passing...And I couldn't find anything on the WH website to firm it up. Let me know if you see anything on the issue.

And might as well get all the gossip out while I can: 'Kurdistan Region' President Masoud Barzani was in Baghdad last week for consultations with top Iraqi leaders. On the side, he exibited some largesse by giving every single member (KDP, PUK and others) of the Kurdish bloc in parliament (54 seats--minus one for President Talabani) $100,000 each to purchase an armored car. So that comes up to a little over $5 million in cash given to 1/5th of Iraq's parliamentarians--the people whose job it is to watch government spending. Shouldn't someone ask Mr. Barzani where this $5 million come from? Was if from a budgetary allocation (either regional or national) or from personal wealth? And where did this personal wealth come from? In 'unrelated' news: ex-officials wanted on corruption charges such as ex-Defense Minister Hazim al-Sha'alan and ex-MP Misha'an al-Jubouri are allegedly hiding out in Arbil (Capital of Kurdistan Region) from time to time and enjoying Mr. Barzani's hospitality--and protection from prosecution.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


You hit it right on. This AP article I just stumbled on mentions that President Bush is due to meet Tariq Hashemi on Tuesday.


Do you think there will be the sort of media show there was with Hakim with Hashemi?

I mean I don't really see them agreeing on much common ground publicly. I can't picture Hashemi thanking President Bush for liberating Iraq, or urging officials to strike harder against Sunni terrorism.

2:22 PM, December 09, 2006

Blogger Nibras Kazimi نبراس الكاظمي said...

Thanks yessir,

You're right about Hashemi and Bush not agreeing on much, yet I still think it is a good thing to lend more stature to the elected Sunni leadership that we have currently.

I still hold all of Hashemi's past hate-speech against him but it is better for Iraq to embrace him rather than the murderous bunch that Khalilzad has been wining (maybe not...) and dining.

I wrote a lengthy response to you on the Sunni leadership in the 'Go Smart' comments section. I hope it was useful.

All the best,


4:29 PM, December 10, 2006

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