Monday, June 21, 2004


APPENDIX - Nominations for the Presidency

The problem of nominating suitable figures for the presidency during the interim period has two major aspects:
On one hand, the position requires a person capable of leading and managing under difficult, and potentially explosive conditions: there is a decades’ long tradition of governing with weapons and terror; there is poverty and hunger; there is a sweeping desire for vengeance; there are a number of forces posed to grasp power; there are groups that are incompatible with each other or with the democratic process; there is the angered and humiliated army; there is a vacuum in efficient leadership of the civil service; there is an exhausted economy and decaying infra-structure; there are external powers seeking to have a role in shaping Iraq; finally, there are big hopes held by a lot of people that will lead to disappointments as the results of this phase will not be magically fast and visible.
On the other hand, there has been, over the past few decades, an active government policy of repressing and oppressing competent people of independent opinions not associated with the previous regime. Many have fled the country; others have escaped to quiet corners within! This has led to an absence of well-known national public figures.
Attempting to find a chief for the Executive Authority capable of dealing with these conditions without the authority of tyranny and commanding the respect of the people, army and Administration and to be capable, at the same time, of steering the country for two years without causing a new disaster…and giving up his office at the end of his term, would not be an easy task!
That is why it is necessary to seek the opinions of all potentially qualified people. Hence the idea of utilizing the organizations that represent the educated elite of Iraq: the universities and the professional institutions. These institutions encompass all geographic, ethnic and religious varieties of Iraq.
Although this represents some distortion of democratic purity, there is some consolation in the facts that:
• This is only a temporary measure and covers a period of two years.
• The elected president is elected only for the interim period and gives up his post at the end of this period.
• The president will work under the supervision of the Legislative Authority which has the power to remove him from office.
• The mechanism is only used to obtain nominations; the actual selection will be made by people’s representatives.

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