Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

The End of Nouri al-Maliki

The End of Nouri al-Maliki

Wednesday, 20 July, 2022 - 05:00
Tariq Al-Homayed
Saudi journalist and writer, and former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper

The voice recording attributed to head of the State of Law coalition of Iraqi former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki about Moqtada al-Sadr and other Iraqi parties spells the end of Maliki’s political career, even if he tries to push on.

The recording, which Maliki’s office denied, warning of “advanced technologies that can falsify facts and voices,” proves that he is a militia, not a political, leader. He is a man of dogma, not of state.

The recording, which researcher Yehya al-Kabisi told our newspaper “offers nothing new of Maliki, as he has always said such remarks before his guests”, reveals a non-patriotic way of thinking and a man who wants power even at the cost of setting Iraq ablaze.

In the recording, Maliki is heard saying: “The coming phase is that of fighting. I told this yesterday to Prime Minister [Mustafa] al-Kadhimi. I told him that I am not relying on you, the army or the police. They will not do anything. Iraq is approaching a brutal war from which no one will emerge unscathed unless we manage to stop Sadr, [parliament Speaker Mohammed] al-Halbousi and Masoud Barzani.”

This is a dangerous statement.

It doesn’t end there. Maliki spoke of arming ten to 15 groups “in preparation for the critical phase.” He said he would attack Najaf and protect the Shiite authority and the people should Sadr attack.

One would be wrong to believe that Maliki is seeking to ignite a Shiite-Shiite war, and that he is disappointed in the Popular Mobilization Forces, which he described as a “nation of cowards.”

The issue is much bigger and more dangerous because we are being confronted with major sectarian strife and an agenda to destroy the real Iraq.

The statements uttered by Maliki cannot come from a man of state. Such a man cannot speak of undermining the state’s security agencies and “overthrowing” Iraq’s Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish powers.

This begs the question: What’s the difference between Maliki’s discourse and that of ISIS, which target and continues to target Iraq and its people?

The leaked recording spells the end of Maliki’ political career, even if he attempts to cling on to power as his dogmatism and extremism cannot lead Iraq to safety.

The leaked recording is a recipe for disaster to spark a major conflict in Iraq between all of its parties, not just Shiites. This should be confronted by all means possible, because should it break out, the war will spare nothing in its path.

On the regional level, those who have dealt with Nouri al-Maliki politically know that he has no political credibility. I personally heard late Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz say that himself.

That day, the late leader was meeting with Saudi journalists. He was asked about his ties with Iraq and King Abdullah replied that after he mediated with then US President George W. Bush, Maliki was requested to sign a ten-point pledge to secure better ties with Saudi Arabia.

King Abdullah said Maliki did not commit to a single point and so, he decided to never to work with him again.

The issue was proven by the developments in the region and now, by the leaked recording, to all Iraqis, not just to a single party.

Other opinion articles

Editor Picks