According to the AP, the Constitutional Committee is seeking a 30-day delay in submitting the Iraqi constitution. This is a serious setback to the American plans, as I’ve been told repeatedly all through July that no delay was forthcoming and that the Iraqis should stick to the schedule because, a U.S. official told me, the Iraqis work best under pressure.
Signs warning â€œComplacency killsâ€ dot the bases of the 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment in Ramadi. The Marines stationed in this provincial capital in the treacherous Sunni triangle are bored. Bored of patrols, tired of manning outposts and frustrated by an enemy they can’t meet face-to-face. The signs attest to the tedium of their days.
My latest effort in explaining the ins and outs of Iraq’s constitutional process.
A constitution cannot be written in a few weeks by a handful of politicians at a conference table; creating a founding document requires the long ordeal of reaching political compromise and building trust…. If the Shiites think they will never be able to rule the country peacefully, why shouldn’t they do what they can to rule by other means?… Not only will the document be ineffective, but the Iraqi people will see the inability to reach a real compromise as a failure of the government as a whole.