The New Government of Iraq

     On March 19, 2003, the Bush Administration invaded Iraq with the claim that Iraq (more specifically, Saddam Hussein) possessed Weapons of Mass Destruction and had links to the terrorists responsible for the destruction of the World Trade Center. George Bush addressed the nation and began Operation Iraqi Freedom claiming, "We come to Iraq with respect for its citizens, for their great civilization and for the religious faiths they practice. We have no ambition in Iraq, except to remove a threat and restore control of that country to its own people." (quote from the Presidents Address to the Nation 3/19/03)

     The Coalition joined the United States Armed Forces and the reformation of Iraq began.

     As of March 19th, 2004, Saddam Hussein has been captured (another report), there have been no Weapons of Mass Destruction discovered, there are over 500 reported United States casualties, over 2000 wounded, an estimated total of over 130,000 US troops still in Iraq, and over 100 billion dollars spent on the battle ( $398 billion, for overall Defense spending in 2004).

     In addition, a new government is being formed in Iraq.

     In May of 2003, with the approval of The United Nations, the Coalition Provisional Authority became the temporary governing group. It's purpose - to create a new lawful government in Iraq until Iraq is politically and socially stable enough to have it's own independent government. Due to the United States overwhelming authority in the world and at the United Nations, an American was selected to lead this newly formed Authority. His name - Paul Bremer.

     Paul Bremer, Director of the U.S. Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance in Iraq, was quickly appointed Administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) on May 6, 2003. He then began the task of selecting his assistants. (It's interesting to note that on the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) website, under the "Who We Are" link, there is no list of who exactly the members of the CPA are.)

     After Paul Bremer created the CPA, he went on to appoint the Iraqi Interim Governing Council. These 25 people selected 25 Interim Ministers, and on November 15th, 2003 created an Agreement to begin the restoration of a new government in Iraq. They also created the first Iraqi Constitution, otherwise known as the Law of Administration for the State of Iraq. The Transitional Administrative Law (TAL), as it is referred to, includes a Bill of Rights and other articles and provisions to ensure equal treatment of Iraqi citizens, a new federal arrangement, an independent judicial system, civilian control over security forces, and acknowledgement of Islam and it's role in the new laws.

     Ambassador Lewis Paul Bremer, III - also known as Jerry Bremer - like George W. Bush, graduated from Yale University in the mid sixties. He then went on to be Henry Kissinger's assistant during the mid 70's. He spent some time as Deputy Chief of Mission/US Embassy in Oslo from 1976-79, followed by his position as Deputy Executive Secretary of State, during Jimmy Carter's presidency. In 1981, he became Executive Secretary and Special Assistant to Alexander Haig. During most of the 80's and 90's he was the United States Ambassador in the Netherlands during the Reagan Administration, worked as Managing Director of Kissinger Associates, and was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Marsh Crisis Consulting Company. Before returning to a government position, he was the director of Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Akzo Nobel NV, the Harvard Business School Club of New York and The Netherland-America Foundation and a Trustee of the Economic Club of New York. On May 6, 2003, following the removal of Jay Garner as civilian administrator of Iraq, Bremer was appointed as the chief U.S. executive authority in the country.

     As the Administrator, Mr. Bremer has had the power to form and direct Iraq's new government. According to the first Regulation of the CPA, signed and put into order by Bremer on May 16, 2003 - he has the power to:

1. Exercise all executive, legislative and judicial authority necessary to achieve the objectives of the CPA.
2. Issue Regulations and Orders.
3. Repeal and/or suspend any Regulations or Orders.
4. Create Regulations and Orders that take precedence over all other laws and publications to the extent such other laws and publications are inconsistent.
5. Issue Public Notices.
6. Approve any CPA Regulation or Order with his signature. (All CPA Regulations and Orders must be signed by Bremer in order to be considered legitimate. The Regulations and Orders will be promulgated in the relevant languages and widely distributed. In case of divergence, English text prevails.)
7. Issue Memorandum in relation to the interpretation and application of any Regulation or Order.
8. Veto any decisions made by the CPA and the Iraqi Governing Council

     In other words, Iraq's new government started out as an autocracy - ruled by an individual (in this case an American individual with good connections!)

     The Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) - sometimes referred to as "The Authority" - is a coalition of many Nations from all over the world, encompassing every major religion and ethnic group. It is led by the United States and the United Kingdom. Click here for a list of Nations that play a role in the financial, material and military assistance of Iraq.

     The main objective of the CPA is to:

1. Exercise powers of government temporarily in order to provide for the effective administration of Iraq during the period of transitional administration - Until June 30, 2004
2. Restore conditions of security and stability in Iraq
3. To create conditions in which the Iraqi people can freely determine their own political future
4. Advance efforts to restore and establish national and local institutions for representative governance
5. Facilitate economic recovery and sustainable reconstruction and development

     With the assistance of the Commander of the Coalition Forces (led by the Commander-in-Chief of the US Central Command - John Abizaid, and senior leaders Lt. General Ricardo S. Sanchez and Major General Walter Wojdakoski. Previous Commander-in-Chief - Tommy Franks), the CPA shall deter hostilities, maintain, Iraq's territorial integrity and security; search for, secure and destroy weapons of mass destruction; and carry out all general Coalition policy. This is done by creating and enforcing Regulations and Orders. Regulations are the instruments that define the institutions and authorities of the CPA. Orders are binding instructions issued by the CPA. These Regulations and Orders will be enforced along side previous laws in Iraq. More specifically, according to Section 2 of the CPA Regulation 1:

                 "Unless suspended or replace by the CPA or superseded by legislation issued by
                 democratic institutions of Iraq, laws in force in Iraq as of April 16, 2003 shall continue
                 to apply in Iraq insofar as the laws do not prevent the CPA from exercising its rights
                 and fulfilling is obligations, or conflict with the present or any other Regulation or Order
                 issued by the CPA."

     This means that if the CPA and/or Paul Bremer decides that any of the previously existing laws in Iraq (from April 16, 2003) get in the way of the CPA's objectives and/or anything the CPA regulates or orders, those laws can be broken and/or ignored. Again, the United States, Paul Bremer, and the leaders of the CPA are in charge of making up the new Iraqi government and it's laws.

     Who is who in the CPA? Good question. I found it somewhat difficult to find out exactly who the members of the CPA are. It was equally difficult, once I did find names, to get substantial information about them - like where they went to school, what career and government positions they've held, and exactly how they are connected to George Bush and the people in his Administration. As this article mentions, it seems as though the people selected to lead the formation of a new government in Iraq are more politically connected than they are best qualified. Many, if not all are Republicans. Many went to Yale, Harvard, Columbia, Stanford, or other very prestigious Universities. There are also many connections to the Carlyle Group, Bohemian Grove, and mega corporations like Bechtel, Halliburton, and Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.

     Paul Bremer, works closely with Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Dov Zakheim, Walter Slocombe, Lawrence Di Rita, and the other members of the United States Department of Defense. Then there's CPA Senior Advisors to Bremer, Daniel Senor, formerly a member of the Carlyle Group and Rich Galen. Additional CPA Senior Advisors to Bremer are listed here. As you will notice, there are a lot of connections to G H W Bush, G W Bush, Ronald Reagan, the Department of Defense, and Yale/Harvard Universities. Also of note, people who are connected to JP Morgan, World Bank, Halliburton, Shell, American Petroleum, Westinghouse Electric, Rudy Giuliani, and Cargill (US grain exporter and the largest private corporation in the world which also promotes GM technology). While clicking on another menu item on the CPA site, I accidentally discovered the CPA Business Opportunities and Support Page. The first link on this page is the CPA Private Sector Development Programs and Services link. It makes it easy for private investors to contact the CPA and "buy a part of the new Iraq".

     As far as the active military is concerned, all of the people working with the CPA are being protected by the Combined Joint Task Force 7. The CJTF-7 is lead by Lieutenant General Ricardo S. Sanchez - Commanding General, and Major General Walter Wojdakowski - Deputy Commanding General. Deputy Director for Operations Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt assists them.

     The CJTF-7

                 "Conducts offensive operations to defeat remaining noncompliant forces and neutralize
                destabilizing influences in the Area of Operations (AO) to create a secure environment in
                direct support of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA). Concurrently, conducts stability
                operations which support the establishment of government and economic development to
                set the conditions for a transfer of operations to designated follow on military or
                civilian authorities."

     (Translated from military jargon: This is the main military group stationed in Baghdad (Area of Operations) whose responsibility is to protect the Coalition Provisional Authority at any cost.)

     The people appointed in these "civilian" and military positions are at the mercy of the Bush Administration. Simply said, if these people play along with "Operation Iraqi Freedom" or "OCCUPATION of Iraqi Freedom", they will hold their positions. If they suggest anything other than what the Bush Administration has in mind, they will be terminated. See: Jay Garner dismissed because he wanted fair elections in Iraq and Two CPA officials killed. I could find no mention of who the two were, what there positions were, other than they were part of "Program 3161". Under a search for "coalition provisional authority 3161 program" I found out that HR 3161, the "Do Not Call" Bill, that was reported to be for the purpose of protecting public citizens from unsolicited calls, includes a "Terrorism Information Awareness Program". My guess is that the two CPA members who were killed by terrorists were somehow involved with this program and/or provided information about terrorists.

     With all of this in mind, I move now to the creation of the Iraqi Governing Council (GC) on July 13, 2003. The Coalition Provisional Authority Regulation 6 is titled the Governing Council of Iraq. One of the new orders mentioned is "Affirming that the CPA and the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General have worked together and will continue to work together in a cooperative and consultative process to support the formation and operation of the Governing Council and welcomed the formation of the Governing Council on July 13,2003". The "Special Representative of the UN Secretary General" is Ross Mountain. Other than that, all I could find was this interview from the UN Integrated Regional Informational News (IRIN) - interview. Paul Bremer gave this speech to the people of Iraq on September 5, 2003. Yet, when looking for the names of the 25 selected to be the Iraqi Governing Council, I had no trouble finding information about them. They were listed on the CPA site, here. I find it interesting that the members of the Iraqi Governing Council members are plainly listed on the CPA website, yet there is little or no mention of any of the American's who are responsible for creating the Iraqi government. Why? Is it because the Americans are only temporary members of the Iraqi Government and/or is it because the Americans who make up the CPA have things they don't want the public to know about them? I supposed Liberals will argue one way and Republicans will argue another...In any case, the CPA and the new 25 members of the Iraqi Council found their next task to be creating the Agreement of November 15th, 2003.

     According to the Agreement of November 15th, 2003 drafted by the CPA and the Iraqi Governing Council, the new "Fundamental Law" as it is referred to, "Will be approved by both the GC and CPA, and will formally set forth the scope and structure of the sovereign Iraqi transitional administration." It then goes on to list the details of this political process. On March 8, 2004 this process led to Iraq's first Constitution, or "The Law of Administration for the State of Iraq for the Transitional Period". This Constitution includes a Bill of Rights. Both a bit wordy, but well worth the read.

     According to the very simplified Overview on the CPA website, The November 15 Agreement: Timeline to a Sovereign, Democratic and Secure Iraq, by Feb 28, 2004 the Iraqi Governing Council will approve a Transitional Administrative Law. This Law, the TAL, will expire at the end of 2005 after a permanent constitution has been approved and elections have been held. Before then, local caucuses will be convened in each of Iraq's 18 governorates to elect delegates for an Iraqi Transitional National Assembly (May 31, 2004). After that, by June 30, 2004, this Iraqi Transitional National Assembly will elect its leaders and assume full sovereignty for Iraq. The Iraqi Governing Council and the CPA will dissolve and it will "end the responsibilities of the Coalition as an occupying power". By March 2005, "direct elections" will be held to determine a convention that will meet to write a permanent constitution that will be approved by the Iraqi people. Then the people of Iraq will vote in national elections on December 31, 2005 to crate a new Iraqi government and the transitional government will dissolve.

     While writing this paper, I noticed that articles about the negotiations concerning the new Iraqi government appear almost every day in the headlines. (Common Dreams, 1, 2, 3, 4)

     The Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, a spiritual leader to millions of Shi'ite Muslims, has become a leader in speaking for the Iraqi people. He and the American/Coalition forces continue to discuss and debate the details of all of the aforementioned Regulations, Orders, Agreements, Constitution, and Bill of Rights. It will be very interesting to stay informed about this situation in the coming months and years.

For updates:

Common Dreams (also has many links to other news sources)
Middle East Report
Occupation Watch
Coalition Provisional Authority