Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Maliki Blinks

Posted by Phoenix Woman on March 31, 2008

Smintheus has the story:

On Sunday Nouri al-Maliki admitted defeat in his attempt to crack down on Moqtada al Sadr’s Mahdi Army in Basra. Maliki had begun the week demanding that Mahdi forces surrender within 72 hours, calling this “a decisive and final battle.” Yet as the disastrous campaign backfired in Basra, Baghdad and elsewhere Maliki pathetically extended the rejected deadline until April 8th. As Patrick Cockburn noted, “Maliki’s confident prediction that he would crush the Mehdi Army is turning out to be a dangerous gamble that is fast eroding his authority.”

Today Maliki appears to have accepted a humiliating ‘compromise’ offered by Sadr (h/t Cernig). The Iraqi government will leave the Mahdi militia alone, which in turn will cease patrolling the streets under arms. It’s a return to the status quo ante, except that Sadr has demonstrated his power conclusively – and Maliki his weakness.

Stay tuned — this is by no means settled.

2 Responses to “Maliki Blinks”

  1. Michael said

    Sadr may wind up being quite reasonable, once the US decides to go.

  2. […] the Iraq front, Phoenix woman has links to stories on the showdown between Maliki and al […]

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