Good News From Iraq

Annie

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I know some want all doom and gloom, but this just isn't:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/26/w...e74685870479fa&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

February 26, 2007
Iraqi Cabinet Approves Draft of Oil Law
By EDWARD WONG

BAGHDAD, Feb. 26 — The Iraqi cabinet approved a draft of a law today that would set guidelines for countrywide distribution of oil revenues and foreign investment in the immense oil industry.

The endorsement marked a major agreement among the country’s ethnic and sectarian political blocs on one of Iraq’s most divisive issues.

The draft law approved by the cabinet allows the central government to distribute oil revenues to the provinces or regions by population, which could lessen the economic concerns of the rebellious Sunni Arabs, who fear being cut out of Iraq’s vast potential oil wealth by the dominant Shiites and Kurds.

The law also grants regional oil companies the power to sign contracts with foreign companies for exploration and development of fields, opening the door for investment by foreign oil companies in a country whose oil reserves rank among the world’s top three in size.

Iraq has 80 known fields, 65 of which will be offered up for bids for development contracts once the draft law is approved by the Iraqi Parliament, said Hussain al-Shahristani, the Iraqi oil minister. The 275-member Parliament is in recess but is expected to look at the draft once it reconvenes next month, Mr. Shahristani said. Ahead of today’s cabinet vote, the main Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish political blocs had agreed to work together to ensure that the law passes Parliament in an expeditious manner, he added.

Since last year, senior Bush administration officials and top American commanders here have said a new oil law is crucial to the country’s political and economic development, and they have been pressuring Iraqi leaders to make passage of the law a priority. In recent weeks, Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, the senior American envoy here, has been in intense talks with Kurdish leaders in the north to overcome their objections to the draft. Iraqi officials say Mr. Khalilzad’s negotiations were crucial to winning unanimous cabinet approval today.

Since the American-led invasion of 2003, Iraqi politics has often been split bitterly along ethnic and sectarian lines, and that kind of conflict could still stall passage of the oil law in Parliament. Drafts have been debated for months by a committee overseeing the writing of the law before the cabinet finally approved it.

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maineman

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I reemain skeptical.. methinks that kurds and certainly sunnis will have a problem with the formula that was approved by a cabinet dominated by shiites. time will tell.
 
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Annie

Annie

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I reemain skeptical.. methinks that kurds and certainly sunnis will have a problem with the formula that was approved by a cabinet dominated by shiites. time will tell.
Has anyone said I feel less skeptism? I just hope and pray, I want the US and Iraqi people to win.
 

maineman

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your naming the thread "GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ - HOORAY!!! YIPPIE SKIPPY!!" might tend to make someone skeptical of your skepticism. ;)
 
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Annie

Annie

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your naming the thread "GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ - HOORAY!!! YIPPIE SKIPPY!!" might tend to make someone skeptical of your skepticism. ;)
I thought it was, you disagree?
 

Bullypulpit

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Has anyone said I feel less skeptism? I just hope and pray, I want the US and Iraqi people to win.
Win? Only if all parties in Iraq, but especially the Shi'ias and Sunnis, sit down and negotiate a political settlement. Victory as defined by President Bush is not probable.

So, I too, hope for the Iraqi people, that they may lead lives free of the strife and turmoil that has been visited upon them. I also hope our troops will return home safely.
 

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