Iyad Allawi, provisional prime minister of Iraq in 2004-2005, had two pieces of information for CNN’s Late Edition Sunday, Aug. 26. One was that he had a six-point plan for full partnership with the United States with this objective: “…to save Iraq and to save American lives, as well as, of course, to save Iraqi lives and to save the American mission in Iraq.”
Secondly, he announced he had paid the Washington lobbyists Griffiths & Rogers $300,000 for their services to promote his plan – on which he refused to expand.
DEBKA-Net-Weekly‘s sources in Washington and Baghdad have obtained access to the Allawi plan and reveal its contents – all eight, not six – points:
1. Taking it for granted that the government in Baghdad headed by the Shiite Nouri al–Maliki is on its way out, he proposes replacing it with an administration headed by himself. Allawi, a secular Shiite and former Baathist, is sure he can count on the Bush administration’s support and that of most Arab governments, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Jordan.
Inside Iraq, he believes he can win the backing of the big Sunni Arab tribes, the Kurds and a large group of Shiite leaders, religious and secular, who fear Iraq’s fall under Iranian domination.
Allawi does not spell out how he means to attain the premiership, but elements of his plan suggest he is thinking in terms of a military coup d’etat. As a former military man and intelligence officer, he will no doubt have made his preparations in Baghdad in good time. Allawi is a seasoned coup plotter. As an exile from Saddam Hussein’s regime, he more than once tried to talk the Americans into backing a putsch against him in the nineteen eighties and nineteen nineties.
2. If he wins the premiership, he plans to proclaim a military emergency in all of Iraq’s embattled regions. Iraqi armed forces will be licensed to carry out operations to suppress groups in opposition to the new regime. Allawi does not elaborate on his methods, but an iron fist is strongly indicated. Any parties resisting his rule and anti-American elements are to be subdued by force of arms with the help of faithful adherents. The aspiring Iraqi prime minister will not shrink from some of Saddam’s methods for restoring law and order to Iraq.
3. Another of his plans is to revoke all the laws and regulations purging the government, police, army and intelligence of former members of the ruling Baath party, which have been enacted since the American invasion in 2003.
A mutual defense treaty with America
4. Sweeping reforms will be carried out in military and security services. Sunni and Shiite militias will be disbanded and their members absorbed into the Iraqi army.
5. His first act as prime minister will be to formally invite the American army to stay in Iraq for another two years at least.
6. Iraq and the United States will sign a military defense pact under which the US will be committed to coming to the aid of the new regime in the event of internal or external aggression. The US will retain its air and ground bases in Iraq. Our sources report that Allawi advised Vice President Dick Cheney and certain Arab rulers that the mutual defense treaty between Iraq and the United States will act as a barrier against an Iranian takeover.
7. Saudi Arabia, the Gulf emirates and affluent Muslim nations such as Malaysia will compile a Marshall plan to save the Iraq economy. Implemented under UN supervision, the program will have three aims: to rehabilitate the Iraqi economy and its oil industry; restore Arab and Muslim influence in Iraq and shut Iran out of Baghdad; and ease the financial burden borne by the United States.
8. A development program will be applied to Iraq’s infrastructure, roads, bridges, power, drinking water and public medical services.
Our sources report that when Allawi presented his plan earlier this month to Cheney, his main champion in the Bush administration, the would-be prime minister urged getting rid of Maliki as soon as possible, accusing him of being Tehran’s agent.
From Washington, Allawi returned to London, where most of his family resides permanently. He reckoned that in the hot summer months of the Middle East, London was a good place to meet Arab rulers. He showed them his plan for moving in on the Baghdad government and asked for their political and financial assistance.
Last week, he arrived in Amman. There he and his team set up a headquarters to stage- manage his arrival in Baghdad, timing it to coincide with Maliki’s fall and open the way for him to step in his place.
Allawi’s next stop is Irbil, Kurdistan, where he will bid for the support of Kurdish leaders.
Will Allawi pull off his scheme for seizing power in Baghdad? Or will it suffer the same fate as his plots to unseat Saddam Hussein and the regimes in power since the US invaded Iraq four years ago?