Cablegate: Daily Iraqi Website Monitoring - September 19, 2005
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 BAGHDAD 003878
STATE FOR INR/R/MR, NEA/PPD, NEA/PPA, NEA/AGS, INR/IZ, INR/P
E.0. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR KPAO IZ
SUBJECT: DAILY IRAQI WEBSITE MONITORING - September 19, 2005
SUMMARY: Discussion on the Constitution and Thoughts on A
Possible Impending Civil War were the major editorial themes
of Iraqi, Arabic language websites on September 19, 2005.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
A. "Effects Worse Than Catastrophe and Defeat!" (Iraq 4 All
B. "Money" (Al-Soat Al-Iraq, 9/19)
C. "Toward an Emergency Plan to Avoid a Civil War in Iraq"
(Independent Iraqi News Agency, 9/19)
D. "I'll Vote Against the Constitution" (Al-Soat Al-Iraq,
A. "Effects Worse Than Catastrophe and Defeat!"
(Editorial by Khair Allah Khair Allah - Iraq 4 All News -
http://iraq4all.org/viewnews.php?id=9914 / Iraqi exile
community website based in Denmark, not affiliated with any
"Has the civil war started in Iraq? This might be the
reality following the series of explosions on Wednesday that
killed over 160. The least that could be said about these
events is that they confirmed fears of an uncontrollable
ethnic struggle. Anyone who wishes to be honest with
themselves should face the facts and wonder whether it is
still possible to salvage anything.
"The bloody events that continued days after "Black
Wednesday" took place against a well-known background of
events: Armed Shiite groups were killing local residents
only because they were Sunnis; in return, suicide attacks
similar to those that took place in Al-Kadhumiya on
Wednesday continued to target large numbers of Shiites.
Murderous instincts were unleashed in this chaotic state
created by the Americans. This has attracted extremists from
all over the globe, making any reasonable statement sound
"There is a reality that cannot be overlooked: despite Sunni
representation in the government, the government has left
Sunnis with the impression that they are continually
marginalized. Whether it is right or wrong, this is the case
and it should be confronted if any efforts are to be made to
avoid a looming civil war. In other words, the presence of
Shiite religious parties such as Al-Dawa and SCIRI has
driven many Sunnis to support terrorism.
"This, in short, is the situation in Iraq; a situation that
is entering the civil war phase, where Shiite parties in
power have not found any way to respond to Zarqawi's
terrorism other than sending armed militias to punish areas
inhabited by Sunni majorities. All this is taking place in
the absence of a clear American strategy-aside from
exaggerated statements against Syria.
"If events continue on this course, it is hard to imagine
how a civil war can be avoided, a war from which Arabs would
find hard to keep their distance, especially with an
increasing Iranian influence in the country. As for the
constitution, it may prove useful for nothing other than
fictional American achievements.
"It is truly a frightening situation. All indications point
to an actual beginning of a civil war that will have a
negative impact on Arabs more significant than those of the
1948 and 1967 defeats."
(Editorial by Mohammed Abdul Jabar Al-Shaboot
Al-Soat Al-Iraq - "The Voice of Iraq" -
http://www.sotaliraq.com/articles-iraq/nieuws .php?id=15666 /
Website run by Faili (Shi'a) Kurds, not affiliated with any
"Prominent Iraqis and urban representatives come out of
their meetings with the Prime Minister happy with the
blessing of meeting the most senior executive official in
the state according to the Transitional Administrative Law
and the draft constitution, and for hearing his sweet
promises to look after their interests.
"It is a positive sign when government officials meet with
citizens to discuss matters of mutual interest, and on top
of that, distribute envelopes containing ten $100 bills
($1,000 U.S.-not local currency) which might raise some
questions over the use of green American currency instead of
the Iraqi multi-colored currency (please do not mix this up
with multi-national forces).
"The only thing we can do here is guess. The first guess is
that since the money was handed out in the Green Zone, it
might be more appropriate to use a green currency which
sends out a better environmental message; a second guess is
that the amount will be of a smaller size and therefore
easier to carry than the equivalent 1.5 million Iraqi
dinars; another guess is that if the amount of money was not
part of the Iraqi government's budget, then there is no need
for it to be in local currency, and this particular guess
raises a serious question about the source of these funds
presented by the PM to his visitors: Do they come from his
personal wealth or from public funds? If it is indeed from
his personal wealth, then there is no problem, as generosity
has always been a good quality. But again, where did this
personal wealth come from, especially since we all know that
the PM does not descend from a wealthy family?
"So I believe it would be rather useful for the PM to reveal
the source of this wealth. Or perhaps these funds were
presented by a charitable organization, and in this case, I
believe the public would like to know where this money is
being spent. If these funds are taken from the government's
budget, then the public has the right to know, as does the
Council of Ministers, or at least the Minister of Finance.
Additionally, what are the criteria for choosing the people
who receive these funds? Maybe the whole thing is nothing
more than a personal friendly gift. If so, why doesn't the
Iraqiya channel broadcast these friendly gestures to its
viewers if they have nothing to do with the coming
C. "Toward an Emergency Plan to Avoid a Civil War in Iraq"
(Editorial by Mohammed Abdul Al'Atti - Independent Iraqi
News Agency - http://www.normal.iraq-
"The sectarian and ethnic congestion in which Iraqis live
nowadays is casting gloomy shadows in Arab and Islamic
countries. All who follow Iraqi affairs and these tragic
events put their hands on their hearts and hold their
breaths hoping they will not witness the day when civil war
breaks out. But candid expectations are not enough, as they
do not end the killing, diffuse the situation, or ease ever
"The issue needs a practical effort proportional in size to
the expected disaster if, God forbid, the disputing parties
decide to use violence to settle matters that bilateral and
multilateral talks fail to solve. Condemnation and warnings
from religious authorities are not enough because they
provide mere words that cannot be turned into tangible
action. The issue needs a serious stance proportional to the
enormity of danger; it requires responsible action that
addresses the disastrous consequences which would result
from sectarian and ethnic war. If it happens it will not
only destroy Iraq, but it will extend to neighboring and
regional countries throughout the Islamic world.
"The issue needs preemptive diplomacy and then an emergency
plan so as to reduce the destructive loss from a possible
disaster-a plan implemented by Iraqis with support and
assistance from top scholars in the Islamic Republic of
Iran, the Gulf States, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey....etc.
Isn't convening an International Islamic Conference to
establish a plan like this something we need to contemplate
and take advantage of before it is too late?"
D. "I'll Vote Against the Constitution"
(Editorial by Yousif Fadhil - Al-Soat Al-Iraq - "The Voice
of Iraq" - http://www.sotaliraq.com/articles-
"Yes the Constitution has many merits, but it also contains
many weak points. The most significant of these is the haste
with which the constitution was written. The reason is not
that Iraq needs a constitution; Iraq lived without a
permanent constitution for long periods and nothing
happened. It will not hurt us if we wait for another year to
discuss its articles and research its unprofessional
"The haste is because of the American agenda-not the Iraqi
agenda! Therefore, Iraq ought to modify its conditions that
currently serve the interests of the United States and those
currently in office!
"I think Iraq is not yet qualified for federalism. Iraq
needs a long time to prepare and practice the democratic
process if it is to enjoy positive results. A constitution
is one of the fruits of democracy.
"I am sure the ratification of a flawed constitution will
lead to instability, erratic actions, and damage to all of
"I will participate in the electoral process because it is
the civilized way to represent people in the state. I will
respect the results even if they are against my vision and
beliefs. I might be wrong. I will try to correct things in
the future in a democratic way. Yes, there is a price to
implement democracy and it must be paid, but it is less
costly than the substitute-dictatorship!"