Bloomberg Businessweek quotes Rafik Hariri Center Senior Fellow Ramzy Mardini on how Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki’s response to factional divides in his country before the current crisis broke out foreshadowed events taking place now:
Even before ISIL took Mosul this month and advanced toward Baghdad, Shiite politicians were positioning themselves to replace Maliki, said Ramzy Mardini, a Jordan-based non-resident fellow at the Atlantic Council research group.
Adel Abdul-Mahdi, a former vice president, Ibrahim Jaafari who leads the National Alliance, which groups the main Shiite parties, former Prime Minister Ayad Allawi, and deputy premier Hussain al-Shahristani have all been touted in Iraqi media.
Even Ahmad Chalabi, accused of providing discredited information to the U.S. before the 2003 invasion, “is trying to plot his reemergence,” said Mardini.[…]
“If the Shiite parties remain adamant on their opposition toward Maliki, then it’s possible Iran would go to the second phase of their strategy: coming up with a consensus candidate,” Mardini said.
In the past, Maliki has cut whatever deals were necessary to remain in power, something that has now landed him with a problem: a reputation for abandoning allies once he’s got what he wanted has left him isolated, Mardini said.