Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Washington to GZ officials: Come on, assert your autonomy !

Never a dull moment. US Embassy employees (says nahrainnet.net, citing high-level sources) have been told to contact senior GZ government officials, including some 20 Maliki "advisers" to make sure they respond to the remarks of Hizbullah leader Hasan Nasrullah with the appropriate talking points, inluding this one: Nasrullah should be criticized for meddling in Iraqi affairs ! Moreover, one of the things he said is that the GZ political process is a creation of the Americans, and not an accomplishment of the Iraqis themselves. The US embassy employees' task is also to make sure that the Iraqi officials insist that the political process is purely Iraqi ! Here's the lede:
The American administration was severely irritated by the speech of Hizbullah general secretary Hasan Nasrullah in which he called on Iraqis to turn to resistance to save Iraq from the occupation. High-level sources asserted that US Embassy employees received instructions from Washington to raise this issue with the Iraqi government, in order to motivate them to criticize that call, and to assert that it constituted an intervention in internal Iraqi affairs.!


Speaking of resistance, the DVD of the film "Meeting Resistance" by Steve Conners and Molly Bingham is out in DVD, which you can find out about at their website meetingresistance.com. It will be shown on AlJazeera (Arabic) this afternoon (Tuesday May 27) at 5:00 GMT, and there's a list of other showings and events on their site (including a session with Siun at Firedoglake on Thursday June 5 at 4:30 Eastern Time). I think the film is going to end up being an important historic document, because it captures various Iraqis' own various explanations why there was no alternative for them, and it isn't something anyone could venture to film any more. So you'll want the DVD even if you can arrange to see it elsewhere.


Blogger William deB. Mills said...

Nasrallah's foreign policy perspective, laid out as a crystal clear challenge to the West, strikes me as potentially of great significance for the course of the Islamic-Western confrontation.

This is a message that will be heard loud and clear not just in Iraq but in Pakistan, Somalia, Palestine, and everywhere else a Moslem population feels under attack by the West. It is of no use to debate whether or not some Moslem population in fact is under attack by the West; it is of no use to whine that the speech represents interference in someone's internal affairs; it would be a dangerous distraction to treat it as an issue of "preventing terrorism."

The issue here is perceptions.
To the extent that Westerners are troubled by the clearly stated challenge of this speech, they need to consider why so many Moslems share this perception. To the degree that Moslems perceive themselves to be cornered by Western military and economic pressure with no choice other than resistance, they will find Nasrallah’s strategic calculus convincing.

We should start a group project of watching the Islamic world for the impact of this speech. You could provide a real service if, over the coming months, you could keep an eye out for Arabic-language references to it.

3:36 PM  
Blogger badger said...

My first contribution to your excellent proposal is already up, in the post today (Wed May 28) on the AlQuds al-Arabi editorial, which, like you, thinks the Nasrullah speech marks a turning-point.

6:11 AM  
Blogger mo said...

Dont you love it, Americans ORDERING Iraqis to assert that it constituted an intervention in internal Iraqi affairs.

If only they were not so blind to the irony.

6:56 AM  
Blogger rmwarnick said...

The Bush administration is self-satirizing. We have to hand out talking points to Iraqi politicians so they can say they aren't American puppets. Good grief.

8:22 AM  
Blogger badger said...

it's like I said, never a dull moment

8:55 AM  

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