The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

Iraq to break apart?

I've been feeling guilty recently about not writing the horrible events of the past few weeks in Iraq because I've been too focused on Lebanon. I won't go into details now, but just want to signal this story by Patrick Cockburn in the Independent:

A car bomb in a market in the Shia stronghold of Sadr City in Baghdad yesterday killed 34 people and wounded a further 60 and was followed by a second bomb in the same area two hours later that left a further eight dead. Another car bomb outside a court house in Kirkuk killed a further 20 and injured 70 people.

"Iraq as a political project is finished," a senior government official was quoted as saying, adding: "The parties have moved to plan B." He said that the Shia, Sunni and Kurdish parties were now looking at ways to divide Iraq between them and to decide the future of Baghdad, where there is a mixed population. "There is serious talk of Baghdad being divided into [Shia] east and [Sunni] west," he said.
Although some people, notably among those who pushed for invading Iraq in the first place, think partition is a good idea, I don't see how it's going to happen without even more bloodshed.