Maliki Out as Iraqi PM?
There may be a significant reshuffling of Iraq’s cabinet.
Major partners in Iraq’s governing coalition are in behind-the-scenes talks to oust Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki amid discontent over his failure to quell raging violence, according to lawmakers involved. The talks are aimed at forming a new parliamentary bloc that would seek to replace the current government and that would likely exclude supporters of the radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who is a vehement opponent of the U.S. military presence.
The new alliance would be led by senior Shiite politician Abdul-Aziz al-Hakim, who met with
President Bush last week. Al-Hakim, however, was not expected to be the next prime minister because he prefers the role of powerbroker, staying above the grinding day-to-day running of the country.
While politics makes strange bedfellows and putting together a workable coalition in Iraq is, to say the least, quite difficult, it has never made sense to include Sadr’s allies in the Government without demanding that he stop backing violence against said government.