On May 12, 2018, Iraq is heading for the its first election post ISIS with Kurdish, Sunni, Shiite and Secular blocks contesting. Since US invaded Iraq in 2003, people of Iraq are looking for a change that may bring a corruption free and peaceful environment in Iraq after prolonged years of war.
Our prediction on the outcomes of election in Iraq:
Iran backed Shiite militias will form the Government in Iraq, that will be a challenge to the US dominance in the region.
Evidences that make this prediction strong
Haider-Al-Abadi became Prime Minister of Iraq in 2014 replacing Nuri-Al-Maliki, with the approval of USA. Mr. Abadi stepped into one of the toughest job in the world, when some American generals predicted the war with ISIS could last a decade.
The reversal of ISIS became Abadi’s strongest card and he is playing with it in this election. Mr. Abadi will be hoping that Iraqi voters will be having his track record against ISIS in their mind, that may help him in winning the majority and to have the second term. Mr. Abadi’s coalition is Nasr (which means Victory).
Mr. Abadi managed to balance relations between Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and USA. He won the heart of Sunni community people by liberating Mosul from ISIS.
Mr. Abadi faces down powerful Shiite rivals, among his most serious rival in this election is Hadi-Al-Amiri. Mr. Amiri is the head of The Fatah and the veteran paramilitary commander. Fatah includes all key components of Hashd-Al-Shaabi.
Hashd is a coalition formed by prominent leaders of Iran backed Popular Mobilization Force (PMF) units, that include mainly Arab Shiite militias. They are mainly funded by Iran and fought against jihadist extremist ISIS. Hashd is the strongest foreign force in Iraq.
As leader of paramilitary forces, Mr. Amiri is also trending his role in the war against ISIS. Mr. Amiri is popular in Shiite majority areas of Southern Iraq and known as a strong man who has a long military record, fought against Saddam Husain in Iraq-Iran war in 1980s from the side of Iran, and later fought against the Americans following the 2003 invasion.
Former Prime Minister, Nuri-Al-Maliki the head of Dawa Party, combined with his vice presidency, is contesting election to become PM again. But, his rule was blamed for corruption and for the rise of ISIS. Mr. Maliki became Prime Minister in 2006 with American support, he is very influential leader but blames on his government may harm him in this election.
Moqutadr-Al-Sadr is the former head of the Mahdi Army, a Shiite militia group who opposed the American presence in Iraq and killed many soldiers. Mr. Sadr backed Mr. Maliki in 2010 but this year he rejected former premier’s proposed government and announced a joint list with Iraqi communist party. Coalition of Mr. Sadr’s militia group with Iraqi Communist Party is known as Sairun coalition, which is led by Mr. Sadr.
Moqutadr-Al-Sadr is one of the most influential figure in Iraq. Western media often refers him an ‘Anti-American’ and ‘radical cleric’. He has strong hold in Sadr city of Baghdad.
A number of journalists, media personalities and social media activists are contesting the election this year. A total of 10 journalists, who were associated with political parties and TV presenters and were working with party funded media houses, filed their nomination for candidacy. Their popularity may give an advantage to political parties to attract voters.
Well known journalist, Muntadher-Al-Zaidi, who hurled his shoe at George W Bush in 2008, announced his candidacy early this month from the Sairun coalition led by Moqutadr-Al-Sadr.
People of Iraq are facing and living in war situation since American invasion in 2003 followed by Jihadist extremism in large part of the country. After all, everyone in Iraq is hoping for peace, corruption free environment and over all development of country. People now want a change.
During Saddam Husain era, Iraqi people were killed by Iran backed Shiite militia, but mindset of Iraqi people may have changed after Iran supported Iraq to fight against ISIS. Iran sent its forces, planes and relief material for Iraq much before the support from US came.
Iran supported to fight Iraq on many fronts at a time to evade extremism and terrorism from Iraqi soil and to achieve peace and stability in the region. Many Shiite groups backed by Iran fought for long time for people of Iraq. This has caused that the Iran backed Shiite leaders have gained popularity in Iraq and many of them are contesting elections and may get sufficient support to make a government of Shiite militias backed by Iran.
In the Fight against ISIS to curb the jihadist extremism, many of Sunni community members have left the country or have been killed in the fight, while others who are left may have lost their identity proofs and hence may not be able to vote during the elections. People may not go to re-elect the former PM Mr. Maliki as his government as its blamed for rise of ISIS. All these make favorable situation for Shiite militias to win majority of seats.
Based on above facts, it is predicted by us that Iran backed Shiite militias will win the election with sufficient number of seats that will lead to the formation of a coalition government where Shiite militias will have enough control on important positions in the government. 165 seats are needed to form a government with majority. Seats won by Shiite militias altogether may cross double digit number. Formation of a Iran backed Shiite militia Government in Iraq will be a nightmare for USA. It will be a direct challenge to US dominance and its interest in the region.