Allawi: US Policy toward Iraq 'Without a Compass'

The mechanisms are about the leaders — who played a role in confronting dictatorship and who laid the tasks of the democratic experiment — coming together and agreeing on forming a national unity government with genuine participation, and that is committed to the road map and that is composed of key leaders in the country, except for maybe some technocrats.

Al-Monitor: Do you think that political solutions can end the crisis, given that the reality of the situation indicates that there are fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) in all Sunni cities?

Allawi: The basis of the solution is only political. When the political climate changes into a unified climate for society without discrimination, exclusion or intimidation, then this climate will repel terrorism, and then, certainly all guns will turn against the terrorists. Al-Qaeda and its extensions are present in all Iraqi cities, starting from Baghdad. And al-Qaeda and its extensions, such as ISIS, are the result of the toxic political climate in Iraq. In addition, there’s the administrative and governmental vacuum left by the occupation and the effects of the region on the Iraqi scene.

Al-Monitor: You suggested the need to differentiate between Sunni fighters and ISIS. How? By what mechanisms can we differentiate between fighters?

Allawi: That’s supposed to be the work of the authority and the government, which was defeated by a bunch of dwarfs and killers as it sought outsiders’ help and drew strength from outsiders instead of drawing strength from its honorable people, from the tribes, army officers, dignitaries and politicians, who have been targeted by the regime since the start of the protests in February 2011 till now.

(Those protests) have been met with repression and intimidation instead of (the government) adopting some of their demands by dealing with them morally and through a national dialogue, especially since the (protests) were initially peaceful, constitutional and had (certain demands).

Al-Monitor: Honestly speaking, do you think that Iraq is heading to partition? If this was a genuine possibility, who exactly is pushing for partition today?

Allawi: Frankly, Iraq has been socially partitioned, and administratively, in some of its areas. It seems to me that the conspiracy has continued and deepened. … Those pushing for partition are those who Lebanonized Iraq (by having quotas) and then Syrianized Iraq (through militias and terrorism).

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