Sunday, August 21, 2005
U.S. diplomats have conceded ground to Islamists on the role of religion in Iraq, negotiators said on Saturday as they raced to meet a 48-hour deadline to draft a constitution under intense U.S. pressure.
U.S. diplomats, who have insisted the constitution must enshrine ideals of equal rights and democracy, declined comment.
Shi’ite, Sunni and Kurdish negotiators all said there was accord on a bigger role for Islamic law (based upon the interpretation of some Iran backed Shia parties) than Iraq had before.
But a secular Kurdish politician said Kurds opposed making Islam "the," not "a," main source of law -- changing current wording -- and subjecting all legislation to a religious test.
“We understand the Americans have sided with the Shi’ites,” he said. “It’s shocking. It doesn’t fit American values. They have spent so much blood and money here, only to back the creation of an Islamist state ... I can’t believe that’s what the Americans really want or what the American people want.”
Now, why not tell this Kurdish politician "what the American people want"? Why not tell the state department and the US diplomats in Iraq "what the American people want"? Why not side with those Iraqi women who demonstrated for equal rights in downtown Baghdad and not let them down? Why not side with those secular and religious Iraqis who do not want a constitution dictated by Iran? I'd rather have the constitution delayed for 10 more years than rushing it through like this!!
Please take a few seconds to call the US state department NOW and raise this issue. The deadline for the constitution is tomorrow (Monday August 22nd).
US State Department:
More numbers here.