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Still not king

Answer: not. The big snag in forming an Iraqi government is, as expected, whether or not Kirkuk winds up in Kurdish hands or not. Add to this the Kurdish insistence on maintaining their own separate militia, and what you’ve basically got is a demand for functional independence plus a big chunk of the Iraq oil reserves.

It is, to say the least, difficult for the Shiite majority to agree. Turkey is still very edgy about Kurdish independence. I don’t know how this gets resolved, short of the Kurds compromising.

It is perhaps relevant that the current leader of Iraq, Allawi, has absolutely no incentive at all to resolve this crisis. The moment a new government is formed, he’s out in the cold. Well, he’s leader of the minority bloc — but if he was in any position to be part of a coalition government, he’d already have done so, and the Kurds wouldn’t be a problem.

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