Notes Regarding the Cairo Memorandum

There was a news article in the media on March 12, 2008 about a memorandum submitted to the United Nations office in Cairo calling for forming a transition government and supervision over the elections in Iraq. The coordinators of the memorandum are three veteran Iraqi politicians, they promised to organize a wide campaign for collecting signatures and to contact regional states in order to obtain their support for the project.

A number of Iraqi politicians from outside the present political process signed the memorandum, which described the present situation in Iraq as disastrous, and affirmed that the basic reason for the failure of the process of reconstruction is the occupation and those political powers which it brought to authority, and warned from the disintegration of Iraq if the U.N. did not intervene. The memorandum called for placing Iraq under political and security U.N. mandate for a limited period.

We note that the memorandum calls for wider mandate than our petition (internet search: UNCEI); we call for limited political mandate and do not wish the U.N. to take a position vis-à-vis the integrity or disintegration of Iraq, we view this matter as part of the right to self-determination which belongs solely to the Iraqi people, and should not be surrendered to any party for any length of time: If the Iraqi people choose to disintegrate Iraq into sectarian and racial cantons after elections that are fair and free of external intervention then their decision should be carried out, and all parties including neighboring states, the occupation and the U.N. should recognize. We also did not pour the blame on one party and not another because we believe that all parties are implicated, and because of our conviction that a U.N. mandate will be reached in partnership with the U.S. and to further its interest in part, and we have to work to persuade the U.S. of the usefulness of the U.N. mandate and not use confrontational language, which will complicate matters and distance the achievement of our goals. Nevertheless, we note that the language of the memorandum will help in collecting of signatures but we did not use it in our petition because of our circumstances and our distance from the theatre of events.

The timing of the submission of the Cairo memorandum coincides with the passing of one year since the publication of our petition, we were hoping to see other initiatives sooner. Our petition, the Cairo memorandum and future initiatives are like knocks on the door of the occupation; the first knock is always the softest, the next is louder and so on until the occupation and outsider get out of the Iraqi political process. Therefore we call on all those who signed our petition and agree with the wider mandate to add their signatures to the memorandum, and we ask those who prefer our language to join us, knowing that our causes are similar and the success of the memorandum is also success to our petition.

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