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Succeeding and seceding in Iraq: the case for a Shiite State
chapterposted on 01.01.2015, 00:00 authored by Benjamin IsakhanBenjamin Isakhan
The US project to democratize Iraq has given way to a dramatic upsurge in ethno-religious factionalism in which a series of groups have sought to use ‘democracy’ to create or exacerbate division. Among these divisive political elements a relatively fringe idea held mostly by power-hungry elites has become a central driving force of much political debate within Iraq: separatism. Although there are many examples of political factions within Iraq which have called for territorial separatism since 2003 (such as some Kurdish, Sunni, Assyrian and Turcoman political parties), this chapter focuses on the less known case for a Shiite state. Specifically, it concentrates on the Shia Arab Islamist political party, the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), which differs from other Shia political factions in their calls for a decentralized federal Iraq with an autonomous Shia Islamic state in the south.