On 15th September, Mohammed al-Halbousi was elected the new speaker of Iraq’s Council of Representatives.
The situation was a shambles and was just another example of how democratic values have been trampled. And ironically, it took place on the International Day of Democracy. It seems that nothing much has changed in the past decade and a half in Iraq.
Iran was of course delighted with the news of Halbousi’s appointment. The United States was also quick to congratulate the new speaker of Iraq’s Council of Representatives. Then the European Union joined in and so did the United Nations.
Spokeswoman of the US State Department Heather Nauert congratulated him and praised him on his previous service to the United States, in particular his support of U.S. interests in Anbar.
What she did not point out, however, was that he became governor there because of the occupation forces that were present. The United States knows that Halbousi was loyal to Iran.
Stories about Halbousi have circulated and it is certain that many foreign leaders will have heard them. Stories, or rather testimonies, about how he spent tens of millions of dollars on guaranteeing a win in the elections.
Current and former ministers and representatives have also said that pro-Iranian militias had made threats and put intense pressure on officials without an ounce of shame.
The people of Iraq have been calling for Iran and its proxies and militias to leave their country. They have hoped so hard for change in the country and have been desperate for the corruption to be left in the past.
They hoped that the country’s judiciary, and foreign powers, would help and support them in their just demands. However, it was not to be. The same corrupt officials are still playing their malign role in the same corrupt political system.
Iraq has moved one step closer to Iranian hegemony and one step further away from Western democracy. Justice has been denied to the people of Iraq and further corruption has been allowed to continue and to prevail.
Nuri al-Maliki, Ibrahim al-Jafari and Haider al-Abadi have all been puppets to the Iranian regime. But now, Iran is going to be able to get the best one yet when the next prime minister is announced.
The country’s presidency will be as much of a disaster as the parliament and the government. The presidency will probably be given to a leader of the Democratic National Union of Kurdistan or the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan as long as they agree to act as a puppet.
It is a shame that in 2018 such events can take place. And it is even more of a shame that the international community has basically sat down and watched it happen. The sooner Iran is removed from the country, the better.
In fact, the sooner the Iranian regime is toppled, all the better for the region and beyond.