March 22, 2012
Iraq's Choice: Dictatorship or Chaos
Michael Bell, Globe and Mail
Iraq is headed for another dark age. Next week’s Arab League meeting in Baghdad is nothing but cover for a state collapsing at full force. The surface manifestations are real: 46 people killed and many more wounded this week in apparently co-ordinated attacks in Baghdad, Karbala, Kirkuk and other Iraqi cities on the ninth anniversary of the U.S. invasion. The prevailing mood on the street is one of fatigue, desperation and fear. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s government cannot control the chaos; indeed, it may be contributing to it as the façade of democratization and pluralism crumbles, accelerated by the departure of the last U.S. troops last December.