>> Saturday, October 25, 2008
Periodically is do a post on the Status of Forces Agreement between the US and Iraq that provides the legal framework for our presence and has been under negotiation for several months. Last week it looked like a deal had been done between Bush Co and al-Maliki that covered the central sticking point of Iraqi Legal jurisdiction over american soldiers. The deal had to go through several phases of approval before it could become law and one was the Political Council for National Security. Apparently it was a no go. McClatchy reporting,
Fearing political division in the parliament and in his country, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki won't sign the just-completed agreement on the status of U.S. forces in Iraq, a leading lawmaker said Friday.
It appears that the same sticking points that have been holding up the agreement all along went unsatisfied in the eyes of the Political Council. There are a number of political reasons for these failures including the Iraqi political classes unwillingness to associate with the americans before the upcoming elections next year. The politicians are trying to balance the appearance of working with the americans with being the tools of iran. This has lead to an impasse with the result that al-Maliki now has to go back to the UN to get the mandate renewed for the coming year or risk the US being unable to perform operations within the country.
Here is a 15 minute in depth expose on the situation from al-jazeera english.