Law School Discussion

KURDS TO THE RESCUE: as mediators and US ally...

Julie Fern

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #30 on: April 07, 2006, 05:30:18 AM »
need...more...she-goats.

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #31 on: April 08, 2006, 11:07:48 AM »
upset??? aww... :'(  how ya ears?  :-*

Fidelio

Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #32 on: April 08, 2006, 11:08:25 AM »
EU executive urges more rights for Kurds in Turkey
06 Apr 2006 16:26:14 GMT

Source: Reuters
 
STRASBOURG, France, April 6 (Reuters) - The European Commission and European lawmakers urged Turkey on Thursday to grant Kurds more economic and cultural rights and voiced concern over violence in the country's southeast.

Sixteen people have been killed and more than 300 injured in street clashes since last week between Kurdish protesters and police sparked by the funerals of 14 Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels killed in clashes with troops.

"The (European) Commission is concerned about ... the outburst of violence and terrorist attacks," EU Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou told members of the European Parliament.

Kyprianou, speaking on behalf of the EU executive, recalled that the PKK was included in the bloc's list of terrorist organisations but urged the Turkish government to fulfill its commitments to improve the rights of Kurds.

"We urge the Turkish government to address in a comprehensive manner, and not only from a security point of view, the problems of this region and of its people," he said.

Ankara has lifted restrictions on the Kurdish language and culture in recent years, hoping to further its bid to join the 25-nation EU, but critics say it needs to do much more.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in the separatist conflict since the PKK took up arms against the state in 1984 with the aim of carving out an ethnic homeland in the mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey.

Turkey began membership talks with the EU last October, and Kyprianou reminded Turkey that ensuring cultural diversity was a condition for accession.

"The Turkish government should take action with a view to enhancing and ensuring economic, social and cultural opportunities for all Turkish citizens," he said.

Kyprianou also called on Turkey to facilitate the return of displaced Kurds to their region of origin and stop deploying state-armed militiamen in villages.

The protection of Kurds' rights is "an absolute precondition for membership of the EU", said Emine Bozkurt, of the European Parliament's Socialist group.

"If violence ceases, then the tanks must leave the streets of villages and towns of southeast Turkey," she said.

Several lawmakers also urged Turkey to engage into a political dialogue with moderate Kurds.
 
 



Aye know you didn't fail to notice that this "EU Exec" is a Greek cypriot.   ;)


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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #33 on: April 08, 2006, 11:09:18 AM »
EU executive urges more rights for Kurds in Turkey
06 Apr 2006 16:26:14 GMT

Source: Reuters
 
STRASBOURG, France, April 6 (Reuters) - The European Commission and European lawmakers urged Turkey on Thursday to grant Kurds more economic and cultural rights and voiced concern over violence in the country's southeast.

Sixteen people have been killed and more than 300 injured in street clashes since last week between Kurdish protesters and police sparked by the funerals of 14 Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels killed in clashes with troops.

"The (European) Commission is concerned about ... the outburst of violence and terrorist attacks," EU Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou told members of the European Parliament.

Kyprianou, speaking on behalf of the EU executive, recalled that the PKK was included in the bloc's list of terrorist organisations but urged the Turkish government to fulfill its commitments to improve the rights of Kurds.

"We urge the Turkish government to address in a comprehensive manner, and not only from a security point of view, the problems of this region and of its people," he said.

Ankara has lifted restrictions on the Kurdish language and culture in recent years, hoping to further its bid to join the 25-nation EU, but critics say it needs to do much more.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in the separatist conflict since the PKK took up arms against the state in 1984 with the aim of carving out an ethnic homeland in the mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey.

Turkey began membership talks with the EU last October, and Kyprianou reminded Turkey that ensuring cultural diversity was a condition for accession.

"The Turkish government should take action with a view to enhancing and ensuring economic, social and cultural opportunities for all Turkish citizens," he said.

Kyprianou also called on Turkey to facilitate the return of displaced Kurds to their region of origin and stop deploying state-armed militiamen in villages.

The protection of Kurds' rights is "an absolute precondition for membership of the EU", said Emine Bozkurt, of the European Parliament's Socialist group.

"If violence ceases, then the tanks must leave the streets of villages and towns of southeast Turkey," she said.

Several lawmakers also urged Turkey to engage into a political dialogue with moderate Kurds.
 

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #34 on: April 08, 2006, 11:11:01 AM »
EU executive urges more rights for Kurds in Turkey
06 Apr 2006 16:26:14 GMT

Source: Reuters
 
STRASBOURG, France, April 6 (Reuters) - The European Commission and European lawmakers urged Turkey on Thursday to grant Kurds more economic and cultural rights and voiced concern over violence in the country's southeast.

Sixteen people have been killed and more than 300 injured in street clashes since last week between Kurdish protesters and police sparked by the funerals of 14 Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels killed in clashes with troops.

"The (European) Commission is concerned about ... the outburst of violence and terrorist attacks," EU Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou told members of the European Parliament.

Kyprianou, speaking on behalf of the EU executive, recalled that the PKK was included in the bloc's list of terrorist organisations but urged the Turkish government to fulfill its commitments to improve the rights of Kurds.

"We urge the Turkish government to address in a comprehensive manner, and not only from a security point of view, the problems of this region and of its people," he said.

Ankara has lifted restrictions on the Kurdish language and culture in recent years, hoping to further its bid to join the 25-nation EU, but critics say it needs to do much more.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in the separatist conflict since the PKK took up arms against the state in 1984 with the aim of carving out an ethnic homeland in the mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey.

Turkey began membership talks with the EU last October, and Kyprianou reminded Turkey that ensuring cultural diversity was a condition for accession.

"The Turkish government should take action with a view to enhancing and ensuring economic, social and cultural opportunities for all Turkish citizens," he said.

Kyprianou also called on Turkey to facilitate the return of displaced Kurds to their region of origin and stop deploying state-armed militiamen in villages.

The protection of Kurds' rights is "an absolute precondition for membership of the EU", said Emine Bozkurt, of the European Parliament's Socialist group.

"If violence ceases, then the tanks must leave the streets of villages and towns of southeast Turkey," she said.

Several lawmakers also urged Turkey to engage into a political dialogue with moderate Kurds.
 
 



Aye know you didn't fail to notice that this "EU Exec" is Greek.   ;)

greeks can get on board...somthing finally may happen...are u implying that the greeks are not part of the eu???

Fidelio

Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #35 on: April 08, 2006, 11:16:01 AM »
EU executive urges more rights for Kurds in Turkey
06 Apr 2006 16:26:14 GMT

Source: Reuters
 
STRASBOURG, France, April 6 (Reuters) - The European Commission and European lawmakers urged Turkey on Thursday to grant Kurds more economic and cultural rights and voiced concern over violence in the country's southeast.

Sixteen people have been killed and more than 300 injured in street clashes since last week between Kurdish protesters and police sparked by the funerals of 14 Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels killed in clashes with troops.

"The (European) Commission is concerned about ... the outburst of violence and terrorist attacks," EU Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou told members of the European Parliament.

Kyprianou, speaking on behalf of the EU executive, recalled that the PKK was included in the bloc's list of terrorist organisations but urged the Turkish government to fulfill its commitments to improve the rights of Kurds.

"We urge the Turkish government to address in a comprehensive manner, and not only from a security point of view, the problems of this region and of its people," he said.

Ankara has lifted restrictions on the Kurdish language and culture in recent years, hoping to further its bid to join the 25-nation EU, but critics say it needs to do much more.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in the separatist conflict since the PKK took up arms against the state in 1984 with the aim of carving out an ethnic homeland in the mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey.

Turkey began membership talks with the EU last October, and Kyprianou reminded Turkey that ensuring cultural diversity was a condition for accession.

"The Turkish government should take action with a view to enhancing and ensuring economic, social and cultural opportunities for all Turkish citizens," he said.

Kyprianou also called on Turkey to facilitate the return of displaced Kurds to their region of origin and stop deploying state-armed militiamen in villages.

The protection of Kurds' rights is "an absolute precondition for membership of the EU", said Emine Bozkurt, of the European Parliament's Socialist group.

"If violence ceases, then the tanks must leave the streets of villages and towns of southeast Turkey," she said.

Several lawmakers also urged Turkey to engage into a political dialogue with moderate Kurds.
 
 



Aye know you didn't fail to notice that this "EU Exec" is Greek.   ;)

greeks can get on board...somthing finally may happen...are u implying that the greeks are not part of the eu???

No aye am implying that many Greek cypriot politicians often grumble as often as they can get a chance about Turkey given the Turkish influence in Cyprus.

What's more is that unlike Greek Cypriots, Greece's ministers have recently pledged support for Turkey's EU membership. 

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #36 on: April 10, 2006, 08:15:57 PM »
Iraqi PM on brink of climbdown after Sunnis and Kurds refuse to work with him

Jonathan Steele in Baghdad
Tuesday April 11, 2006
The Guardian


Ibrahim Jaafari's chances of staying on as Iraq's prime minister were dramatically reduced last night after Sunni and Kurdish leaders announced they would not budge from their refusal to work with him.
Members of the Shia parties which nominated Mr Jaafari as their candidate and stood by him for two months were engaged in frantic last-minute lobbying ahead of an expected climbdown. Under pressure from their religious leaders, as well as the Iraqi media and the US and Britain, the Shia politicians will meet today to decide whether to choose a different candidate.

After weeks of paralysis, the moment of choice seems to have arrived. The Shias established a three-man committee on Sunday to approach the other groups for their views.

Shias emerged from the December elections as the largest group in parliament but with less than half the seats, forcing them to find allies. There is widespread agreement that Iraq needs a government of national unity to handle the security crisis and halt a slide into civil war.

Mr Jaafari's hopes of a softening in attitude by Sunnis and Kurds were dashed when Dhafir al-Ani, spokesman for the Iraqi Accordance Front, the biggest Sunni Arab bloc, said it had told the Shia committee the Front continued to reject him. They urged the Shias to come up with new names.

Iraq's President Jalal Talabani, one of the main Kurdish leaders, gave the same message on behalf of the Kurdish alliance. Mr Talabani, who is expected to be re-confirmed in his post when parliament meets, has had almost no relations with the prime minister for months. When they attended the funeral of Saudi Arabia's King Fahd in August and the UN general assembly in New York in September, they flew in separate planes.

The fourth group in parliament, the secular block led by Ayad Allawi, is also against him, leaving him isolated. If Mr Jaafari refuses to give up his claim to lead Iraq for another four years, today's meeting could hand the issue to parliament. But the arithmetic runs against the prime minister, and he may decide it is more dignified to give way within the Shia block rather than be voted down by MPs.



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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #37 on: April 11, 2006, 11:21:38 PM »
Analysis: Who are the players in Iraq?
Claude Salhani
United Press International
April 11, 2006

WASHINGTON --  Nawaf Obaid, an adjunct fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, recently released a comprehensive study of the situation in Iraq titled "Meeting the Challenge of a Fragmented Iraq: A Saudi Perspective". The author of the report offers background on the various players and political parties elbowing for power in post-Saddam Iraq. The following are extracts of his report.

The Kurds

The Kurds constitute about 20 percent of Iraq's population. The administrative region of Kurdistan is a de facto semi-autonomous state, albeit with borders to be finalized. Since the end of the 1990-91 Gulf War the Kurds have enjoyed relative prosperity. They remain divided, however, between the Democratic Party of Kurdistan, the KDP, led by Massoud Barzani in the western zone with Irbil as its capital, and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, or PUK, represented by Jalal Talabani, in the eastern zone with Sulaimaniya as its capital.

Obaid points out that a return to the status quo ante is unrealistic. "What is clear is that this new generation is very certain that they do not want to be part of Iraq," writes the Saudi security specialist.

The Kurds have a well-trained and equipped force of more than 160,000 Peshmerga fighters. Obaid points out "the endgame is clearly independence. This will be achieved through a combination of patience and political maneuvering."

The Shias

The SCIS report explains that Shia politics is dominated by three parties who joined the United Iraqi Alliance (UIA) in the December 15, 2005 elections. Its leader, Abdel Aziz Al Hakim, also controls the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq or SCIRI. The three parties are SCIRI, Risaliyoun (the party of Moqtada Al Sadr), and the Dawa party.

The United Iraqi Alliance is composed of the following parties:

- Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, SCIRI
- Dawa Party
- Centrist Grouping Party
- Dawa Party/Iraq's Organization
- Badr Organization
- Justice and Equality Grouping
- Iraqi National Congress, INC
- Islamic Virtue Party
- First Democratic National Party
- Islamic Union of Iraqi Turcomen
- Turcomen Al Wafa Party
- Hizbullah Movement in Iraq
- Islamic Masters of Martyrs Movement

The SCIRI is the largest, best organized, and wealthiest, with a militia of about 25,000 and an estimated support base of some 2.5 million to 3 million. Moqtada Al Sadr's party, according to intelligence estimates, has the support of 1 million to 1.5 million. His Mehdi Army fought Coalition forces and the Iraqi Interim government in the early days of the occupation. While sketchy, intelligence sources estimates the Mehdi Army at just under 10,000 men. The Islamic Dawa, led by Prime Minister Ibrahim Al Jaafari, came in second on the Alliance's list after the SCIRI.

All three groups endorse the UIA platform that calls for the enforcement of the Iraqi constitution and for national unity. Each of these groups, says Obaid, "is beholden in some way to Iran and has ties to its intelligence and security services".

The SCIRI was founded in 1982 after the original Islamic Dawa Party was obliterated following an unsuccessful attempt on the life of Saddam Hussein. "It was the principal opposition group of the Baathist regime," says Obaid. The SCIRI won popularity among the Shias through its social services.

The Dawa Party, established in 1958, was "originally created to counter secularism, communism and the Baathist ideology of Arab socialism". Obaid states that "although founded by Shias, the group has worked closely with the Sunnis". Prime Minister Ibrahim Al Jaafari is the current leader of the Dawa party.

The Sistani Factor

Obaid identifies Grand Ayatollah Ali Al Sistani as "Iraq's most important unelected figure".

Iranian Interference in Iraq

According to intelligence assessments, Obaid says, "there are strong indications that Iran continues to be deeply involved in shaping the future direction of Iraq". However, "there is little appetite for an Iranian style Islamic government among the Iraqi population", according to Obaid. But he warns: "The mullahs and their proxies have the power to disrupt the political process, create chaos, and threaten the emerging Iraqi state."

Finally, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps has been able to place key operatives in strategic positions in the new Iraqi administration.

The Death Squads are organized under a separate directorate headed by a general who coordinates with an Iranian colonel from the Al Quds Forces. They are believed to be responsible for the assassinations of important Sunni tribal leaders, prominent academics and former military officers.

The Sunni Muslims who have long dominated the country make up 12 to 15 percent of the population. Sunni Islam remained the official state religion despite enforced secularism of the Baath Party. Sunnis can be found among Iraq's ethnic Arabs, as well as among Turcomen, Kurds and other minorities.

Sunni Political Associations

The CSIS study states: The Iraqi Accordance Front, or IAF, is a coalition led by Adnan Al Dulaimi and Tariq Al Hashimi and includes the Iraqi National Dialogue Council, the Iraqi Islamic Party, and the Iraqi People's Conference. The Iraqi Islamic Party is affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

The Insurgency

Intelligence estimates there are approximately 77,000 insurgents. Those, in turn, can call upon hundreds of thousands of direct and indirect supporters. Obaid sees the insurgency as "the single largest threat to the new Iraqi state and may ultimately prove to be its undoing".

Insurgents have carried out tens of thousands of attacks and are responsible for thousands of deaths among the Coalition Forces and the general population, according to the CSIS report. "According to senior Iraqi tribal leaders, the insurgency is orchestrated mainly by former commanders and high level military officers from the former Baathist regime, combined with a sizable number of mid-level officers."

Counter to popular belief the religiously inspired insurgency, the jihadis, are a far smaller group. Iraq's tribal system plays a primary role in the insurgency, providing it with a "major source for its recruits".

The jihadis, says Obaid, "are responsible for the more violent and spectacular attacks in Iraq". Intelligence estimates their numbers at around 17,000, of which some 5,300 are foreign. Jihadis are generally Salafis and include Tandzim Al Qaeda Fi Bilad Al Rafidayn (Al Qaeda of Jihad Organization in the Land of Two Rivers) and Jaysh Ansar Al Sunna, an outgrowth of the Kurdish group, Ansar Al Islam. All of these groups target US forces and Shias. They are informally under the leadership of Jordanian born militant, Abu Mussab Al Zarqawi.

These groups have carried out suicide bombings, kidnappings, assassinations and beheadings. The first months of 2006 have seen an increase in the total number of jihadi fighters in Iraq, although there has been a slight decrease in the percentage of the foreign element. The drop is attributed to the implementation of stronger mechanisms preventing foreign fighters from entering Iraq, according to Obaid.

Syria's role

Syria remains the major entry point for foreign jihadis into Iraq. Poorly funded Syrian border guards and armed forces lacking the means to patrol the border is the primary cause. Additionally, the government is unable to purchase advanced technology required to remotely monitor the border. "The 450-mile [730-kilometer] border between Iraq and Syria has been a windfall for the insurgency," says the author of the report.

The United States has consistently accused Syria of failing to prevent militants from crossing the Syrian-Iraqi border to join the insurgency in Iraq, a charge that President Bashar Al Assad has denied. Obaid emphasizes that insurgent activities within Syria "are not officially sanctioned by the government".

Finally, intelligence sources indicate that a specialized unit of Iran's Al Quds forces also provides logistical support to Sunni militants.

seehttp://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prelaw/index.php/topic,60174.0.html#new

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #38 on: April 16, 2006, 11:18:03 PM »
Kurds march on EU over Turkish treatment
15 Apr 2006 12:36:59 GMT

Source: Reuters
 
BRUSSELS, April 15 (Reuters) - Thousands of Kurds marched through Brussels on Saturday, calling on the European Union to put pressure on Turkey to improve its treatment of Kurds.

Kurds came from around Europe, carrying flags and holding up pictures they said showed victims of street clashes with Turkish police that occurred two weeks ago in southeast Turkey.

Ankara began negotiations with the EU to join the rich 25-member bloc last year. But its conflict with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has fought for 20 years to carve out a Kurdish homeland in the region, has been one of several sticking points in the talks. "We want the European Union to talk to Turkey, to say that there is a problem, there is no democratisation in the country, and to push for dialogue between Turkey and the Kurds," a march organiser, Sidan Dogan, said.

Local media said there were about 10,000 protesters and that the march appeared to be peaceful. The police were not immediately available to say whether there were any incidents.

In late March, 16 people died in street battles between Kurds and Turkish police, which were sparked by the funerals of 14 PKK rebels killed by troops.

The EU then voiced concern over the violence, and called for Turkey to grant more economic and cultural rights to the Kurds. It also noted that the PKK was on the EU list of terrorist organisations.

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #39 on: April 18, 2006, 10:11:42 PM »
External forces on Iraq's new government
The US and Iran should put their interests aside and work together to stabilize Iraq.

By Joost Hiltermann

AMMAN, JORDAN Halabja is a town in Iraqi Kurdistan shaded by mountains, behind which lies Iran. On March 16, Kurds converged there to hold their annual commemoration of the Iraqi chemical attack that killed thousands in 1988. Normally it is an occasion for visits by Kurdish and foreign dignitaries, speeches extolling Kurdish suffering and advocating independence, and even some festive activities. When I visited last year, a power hang glider entertained the crowds by buzzing low over the Halabja memorial.

This year, the event took a different turn. Townspeople had long accused the Kurdish leadership of exploiting the gas attack for political gain and withholding foreign assistance intended for the attack's survivors, many still suffering from debilitating illnesses. Instead of joining the commemoration, Halabjans demonstrated at the memorial, which houses a museum, an art exhibit, and a conference room. Guards of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), one of the two main Kurdish parties, panicked and opened fire. One demonstrator died, several others were injured. Enraged, the crowd stormed the monument erected to the memory of their loved ones and burned it to the ground.

Deeply embarrassed, the PUK quickly pointed a finger at Iran. The Iranians have long meddled in Kurdish politics, supporting Islamist groups to check the secular parties' power. The Islamists are particularly strong in Halabja, where they gave rise to violent offshoots, such as Ansar al-Islam. Informed observers promptly offered a plausible explanation for an Iranian hand in the March 16 fracas: The "spontaneous" demonstration was a warning from Tehran to PUK leader Jalal Talabani, Iraq's president, to stop opposing the Shiite coalition's candidate for prime minister, Ibrahim Jaafari. Whether true or not, many Kurds certainly saw the event as an Iranian message.

The Kurds do not want a Jaafari-led government. During his first term, they say, he hindered their quest to gradually incorporate oil-rich Kirkuk into the Kurdish region. But their challenge to Mr. Jaafari is seen by many Iraqis as part of a struggle over their country's future between two bigger players: the United States and Iran.

The Shiite coalition, the United Iraqi Alliance (UIA), was established in 2004 to parlay the Shiites' demographic majority into political dominance. Supported by Iran, the strategy proved spectacularly successful. The UIA convincingly won both the January and December 2005 elections. Since then, Iran and other stakeholders have sought to maintain the Shiites' unity in the face of growing instability and violence. In an internal poll in February, Jaafari defeated his main rival, Adel Abdel-Mahdi, by a single vote. Mr. Abdel-Mahdi is a senior official in the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), an Islamist party that has contributed heavily to the recent surge in sectarian violence.
Although SCIRI is generally considered an Iranian proxy, Tehran actually prefers Jaafari to head the next government, because Abdel-Mahdi, despite his affiliation, is a pragmatist with secular rather than Islamist credentials who enjoys strong support in Washington. The Bush administration, in turn, considers Jaafari incapable of containing the violence. Moreover, Jaafari is beholden to the radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, who has repeatedly called for US forces to leave.

Kurdish opposition to Jaafari has been the main obstacle to the formation of a national unity government. The Kurds allied themselves with an array of Sunni Arab and secular parties to pressure the UIA to withdraw Jaafari's candidacy in favor of Abdel-Mahdi or another secular candidate. Even should they fail in their bid, the recent compromise agreement to set up an advisory national security council may undermine Jaafari's power. The rationale behind the council's creation was to dilute the power of a UIA-led government.

Whatever government emerges from this tug of war, in other words, will be weak. This is a dangerous prospect in a country that balances on the brink of civil war. The irony is that neither Iran nor the US can afford to press their power struggle too far. Both support Iraq's territorial integrity, a principle threatened by spiraling conflict. If Tehran was indeed behind the Halabja demonstration that turned violent, it would be playing with fire by heightening tensions.

Washington likewise finds itself under pressure to withdraw from Iraq even as it sees Iranian influence spread. Attempts to contain the Shiite parties that won the elections could unleash popular anger against the occupation.

Iran's recent decision to begin discussion with the US concerning Iraq may well be chiefly informed by its wish to deflect pressure stemming from the nuclear crisis, but both countries also share an interest in finding ways to stabilize Iraq. Both sides have much to gain and even more to lose in the current standoff. There couldn't be a better time for both to sit down together and put their cards on the table in an all-out effort to save Iraq and, thereby, their own vital interests in the Gulf.