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[ This message has been sent to you via the CASI-analysis mailing list ] [ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ] http://www.iprospect.org.uk/na20jan.html News Analysis January 20, 2004 -Direct general elections are the ideal method of picking members of the Iraqi Transitional Parliament. However, time restraints, imposed due to upcoming US presidential elections, coupled with security concerns within Iraq, render this unfeasible. The next best thing would be to have a selection procedure based on previously agreed percentages, as was effectively done last July in the selection of the Governing Council, whose breakdown was consistent with the Salahuddin percentages. The worst option would be to have a selection procedure not guided by agreed percentages, and this in effect is what the current 15th November plan is. Fearful of unfair representation or the return to minority rule, both possibilities of the current plan, the Shia of Iraq have taken to the streets in Baghdad and other cities, calling for general elections. It is this fear which has led to Sayyid Seestani's continued insistence for elections, hoping this will push the US to a compromise that would guarantee fair representation. It is unclear how much the US is willing to change the plan and what suggestions, if any, the UN can offer. What is certain is that the transition plan cannot remain as it is. -Following the capture of Saddam, Iraqis, no longer fearful of the old regime, are tipping off the Coalition and Iraqi police about insurgents, most of whom seem to be foreign Arab extremists. This comes as the Governing Council clamps down on members of the former Ba'ath regime. Increasingly, attacks are aimed against innocent Iraqis, which is fueling anger - further aiding in rooting out insurgents. -A spate of attacks against Sunni and Shia mosques are most likely being carried out by Saddam supporters, in the hope of igniting sectarian violence, however this has failed to materialize. -The Iraqi economy is showing signs of sustained recovery as the new Saddam-free dinar reaches an eight-year high, and a trade fair focusing on rebuilding Iraq opens. News Analysis brought to by the Iraqi Prospect Organisation: http://www.iprospect.org.uk Promoting democracy for Iraq. _______________________________________ Sent via the CASI-analysis mailing list To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-analysis All postings are archived on CASI's website at http://www.casi.org.uk