By Mark Pyruz
File photo: Inside the Iraqi parliamentary building
According to Associated Press:
Iraqi lawmakers rejected Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's nominees Tuesday to lead the defense and interior ministries, leaving the crucial Cabinet posts unfilled as an emerging U.S.-led coalition intensifies its air campaign against Islamic State extremists who have seized a third of the country.
Al-Abadi, Iraq's new prime minister, put forward Sunni lawmaker Jaber al-Jabberi as his candidate for defense minister and Shiite lawmaker Riyad Ghareeb as his pick for interior minister. Parliament, which could confirm the nominees with a simple majority, voted 118-117 against Ghareeb, and 131-108 against al-Jabberi.
Ahead of the vote, two lawmakers, Hussein al-Maliki and Mohammed Saadoun, told The Associated Press that the selection of Ghareeb met with some contention, mostly from the Shiite Badr Brigade, a powerful militia with close ties to neighboring Iran. Ghareeb failed to win approval by a single vote.COMMENTARY: Further evidence of a maximalist approach being taken by American strategists, vis-a vis Iran in the Iraqi political sphere. During this round the U.S. backed selections were very narrowly rejected by the Iraqi parliament. It appears the Iran-backed Badr political organization has been attempting to place a candidate to fill the Minister of Interior post, while rejecting candidates not acceptable to itself and Iran.
Elsewhere, another example of the maximalist approach being taken by the United States vis-a-vis Iran came Monday, with Pentagon spokesman COL Warren stating:
The second objective of the U.S. plan to train and equip moderate Syrian is "an offensive function to increase pressure on ISIL as well as the regime” of Syrian President Bashar.
"We've from the very beginning that the Assad regime has perpetrated horrendous acts against its own population. The moderate opposition was formed as you know in an effort overthrow the Assad regime," Warren said.American foreign policy goals appear quite ambitious in maximizing the advantage provided by opportunities afforded by the 2014 Northern Iraq Offensive. This multi-track strategy against ISIL Syria, Iran and Iran's allies carries risks, however, in potentially lengthening the struggle against ISIL, as well as the United States becoming enmeshed in a multi-dimensional war. Moreover, these risk become heightened if, during the course of the U.S.-led war, a situation of "mission creep" takes effect, with American ground troops being deployed within an environment of multi-dimensional conflict.