Iraqi Parliament Votes for Delay

BAGHDAD — I know I said “I hoped the new Iraqi constitution will be easily amended”:, but I hope it’s not as easy to amend as the TAL was last night. With 20 minutes before the deadline, the Iraqi National Assembly voted by a show of hands to amend Iraq’s working constitution so as to extend the Aug. 15 deadline by seven days for submitting the new, permanent charter. If the American constitution were so easy to amend, I can only imagine the crazy stuff we’d have in there.
I’m going to have more on these developments later in the day for TIME Magazine, but for now, I’d like to say that I’m glad that no one has walked away yet. The Sunnis on the committee obviously feel that forcing the collapse of the government is not in their interests right now. However, I’m hearing the Kurds are a little more extreme and ready to walk if they don’t get _everything_ they want: Kirkuk, oil revenues, the right to secede, autonomy. Why am I not surprised? I always suspected the Kurds would be the spanner in the works in the end. More and more, I hear Iraqi Arabs muttering that the Kurds should just frickin’ leave if they don’t want to be part of Iraq so much.

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