Today is the start of the first day of the celebration of Id al-Adha holiday in Iraq.
I previously mentioned, in my last post that PM Maliki has yet to receive the needed official letter from the President elect Jalal Talabani to start forming the government. From the time when PM Maliki receives the official letter is when the 30 days actually starts that a government is formed and no time before.
It’s possible that they might be waiting till after the Id al-Adha holiday is over to send that letter. In the meantime, everyone is celebrating the forming of the government (which is only partly true of the forming) however, they still have ministries and cabinet positions to fill. I should warn you all not to get prematurely excited because I am being told that PM Maliki has to fist resign his position and then be re-elected by the Iraqi Parliament again as the new Prime Minister. It is the talk of the town right here in Baghdad and people are speculating on what could happen. The question being brought up right now is “What if PM Maliki resigns his position and then the Iraqi Parliament refuses to vote for him or he resigns and the Parliament chooses or votes for someone completely different”. Could be a possible back door job. It will be interesting to see what the end result will be. When it comes to Iraq, anything could happen and nothing surprises me.
In the meantime, different political blocs are discussing the mechanism for allocating the ministerial portfolios. They are talking about a point system. For every two parliamentary seats that you’d won in the March election you get one point. The sovereign posts such as the Prime Minister, President, Parliament Speaker post and Chairman for the National Council for Strategic Policies will all get 15 points. The leader of the Al-Iraqiyah List Iyad Allawi would have already used 30 points of his total because he has the Parliament Speaker and the Council for strategic Policies position. Keep an eye out to to see new ministries created and old ones discontinued.
As things change here within the Iraqi government I hear of more and more rumors that are running rampant in the world wide web. I will try to debunk most of them here and now:
For one, there is absolutely NO military unit that is over here in Iraq with a mission for the Iraqi dinar. That is completely FALSE. I find it kind of silly that some would think that a unit would be configured for that one kind of assignment. If anyone comes forward and claims to be a part of this mission or even pretends to have knowledge of it know that they are being misleading. In fact, most of the units will be withdrawing from now until the end of next year. Most of the unit rotations who still remain here are your standard and business as usual types.
Another rumor making the rounds (this rumor has been recycled every year for the last three years) is in regards to the Ration Card. Just this year alone I have mentioned the ration card several times. The Ration Card is NOT going to be valued at less than what it was last month or even last year. It is still the same and I did previously mention to you that the Iraqi government is not offering the same food items as they had in the past. The only notable thing that the Iraqi government has done in regards to the Ration Cards is that all Iraq Army officers from the rank of Major and above have had all their cards canceled solely because their income is above the threshold. That is ALL that has changed in regards to the card.
If you have been following the American Contractor blog or are a subscriber to the mailing list you would have already known that I had mentioned the Iraqi government was preparing a list.
The Ration Card; if you make more then 2,100 usd a month you no longer get the staples, the benefits of the Ration Card.
The Iraqi government wants a list of all Iraqi’s that make more than 1.5 million dinar that hold a Ration Card.