Hogan's Alley

Friday, November 25, 2005

Sign Of Good News In Iraq???

The NY Times is reporting that a security aid to the current President of Iraq, Jalal Talabani, has received several calls from representatives of multiple insurgent groups. The point of the calls is to explore the entry of these groups into the political process.

The aid, Lt. Gen. Wafiq al-Samarraie, would not specify the groups involved, but he did say that both Islamist and Bathist groups are involved.

Before we get too hopefull, as the Times' reporter, Edward Wong, reports:

Because of the sketchy details provided by the general, it was difficult to assess the significance of the calls. In the last year, some politicians have announced that they were in touch with various insurgent groups, only to have serious doubts later raised about the importance and legitimacy of those contacts.

One notable example involved Aiham al-Samarraie, the former electricity minister, who asserted months ago that he was talking to several insurgent groups. The groups he named then posted statements on Web sites calling Mr. Samarraie a liar and demanding that he be killed.

It is also very late in the political process, given that the elections are set for December 15. We'll have to watch what the insurgents say and what they do on the ground.