On June 4th, Jalal Talabani, first democratically elected president of Iraq, attended the inauguration of the Kurdish National Assembly in Erbil. However, in that city of one million inhabitants, you can not see a single Iraqi flag and many parliamentarians that had to swear loyalty to the unity of the Kurdistan region of Iraq dropped the phrase “of Iraq”. Simultaneously, the representative of the Iranian intelligence services in Erbil expressed satisfaction for the assumption of power in Iraq of people supported by Tehran.
George W. Bush has depicted the struggle in Iraq as a battle between freedom-loving Iraqi people and terrorists. However, this interpretation is wrong. There is no Iraqi insurgency but a Sunni Arab insurgency. However, it can not win in Iraq as it will never be able to have the Kurds and Shiites in its ranks. In his June 28 speech, President George W. Bush based his Iraqi strategy in the creation of an Iraqi Army and the writing of a constitution. Building a national army in a country that does not have a shared national identity is a challenge. The Shiites and the Kurds, in many cases with good reason, sometimes suspect that the Sunni Arabs are cooperating with the insurgency and Shiite and Kurdish political officials guarantee their security with their own militia. The Americans do not understand that the Shiites and the Kurds no longer want in their army people associated with Saddam Hussein, who have blood on their hands.
A Shiite list won the Iraqi elections. It included secular Shiites like Ahmed Chalabi, but the real power is in the hands of religious parties. Currently, these parties want to impose an Islamic state making Islam the principal source of law, limiting the rights of women and other religions. The militias of these parties already act as Iranian-style religious police in southern cities. The Dawa Party and the Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq promote an Iranian-style political system, supporting Tehran’s interests. Tehran can also rely on its men infiltrated in the Iraqi armed forces. On July 7 Iran and Iraq signed an agreement that would have Iranians train the Iraqi military.
At the same time, the Kurdistan is heading towards its independence. Massud Barzani became the president of the Kurdistan. The Kurdish Parliament also passed a law making him commander in chief of the Kurdish armed forces. However, he is limited by the fact that he can not deploy Kurdistan forces elsewhere in Iraq. In the meantime, the Assembly banned the entry of non-Kurdish Iraqi forces into Kurdistan without its approval. In addition, the Kurds overwhelmingly voted for independence during an informal referendum in January.
The debate about “federalism” is a conflicting point between Kurds and Shiites regarding the independence of Kurdistan. In such circumstances, it is hard to imagine that they will reach an agreement on the constitution any time soon. In this debate, the Kurds are intransigent regarding the secular aspect, the women’s rights and federalism. It would be an irony that they would not be supported by the United States taking into account the objectives they had before the beginning of the war. Theoretically, it would have been possible to see a theocratic constitution imposed in Iraq, except for Kurdistan but L. Paul Bremer thought that it would be obsolete.
Rather than an insurrection, the real danger in Iraq is an Iranian takeover. In order to avoid it, it is necessary to make Iraq a federation with flexible links.

New York Review of Books (États-Unis)

Iraq: Bush’s Islamic Republic”, by Peter W. Galbraith, New York Review of Books, August 14, 2005.
In Iraq, Bush is laying the foundations of an Islamic Republic”, Daily Star, 15 de agosto de 2005.