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Sadr Ministers Pre-emptively Quit

April 18, 2007

 In January I wondered whether Maliki was indeed finally ready to dump al-Sadr and the Shiite militias. In February, I had hoped that the Sadr bloc was starting to play nice. That appears to have been a temporary move as was likely. Now, possibly to avoid being fired in the long-awaited cabinet reshuffle, they have stepped down. Omar reports at Pajamas Media:Sadr Ministers Out, Now What?

In my opinion, Sadr and his political wing will now pretend to distance themselves from the armed wing, which is what they’ve been doing for some time now, while actually keeping -if not increasing- the support for armed operations against military and civilian targets. at the same time, they will try to drive more people into opposing the government and the presence of coalition troops with spectacular protests here and there. And they will find nothing wrong if those “peaceful protesters” occasionally decide to use force and shoot at Iraqi and US soldiers or eliminate those who collaborate with the government and the coalition, because “that’s not us, not the Mehdi army. It’s the people’s reaction to an incompetent government and an illegal occupation”.

Now that they have left the government, they’re going to take advantage of simple-minded people who will no longer blame them for lack of basic services, because the Sadrists are not part of this government anymore. They will redirect all the blame onto Maliki and the coalition, when in fact, it was the Sadr bloc ministers who were controlling three of the most important ministries in charge of basic services: Health, Education and Transportation, in addition to three others.

Read the whole post. It sounds like a smart move by Sadr who can now be “shocked, shocked” himself.

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