The Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, Sayyid Ammar Al Hakim, confirmed that there is accordance around the main traits of the election law, explaining that the Citizen Bloc works with the other blocs, the Prime Minister and the Chief of Parliament to establish these agreements to reach a detailed vision of the law, in a way that would guarantee everyone’s interests without injustice to anyone. His Eminence called for ratifying the law as soon as possible without delay, after making sure that the public interests of all political blocs and constituents are taken into account, which will help create a calm electoral environment. He stressed that the timing of the elections will be a red line not be crossed by anyone and warned that postponement would be a dangerous precedent. Sayyid Al Hakim indicated that the agreements of blocs on the open list and multiple districts are aligned with the religious authority’s will to uphold the rights of citizens, calling not to scatter the votes. His Eminence mentioned, in a conversation at the weekly cultural meeting held in his Baghdad office on Wednesday, 2/10/1986, the terrorist attacks that have hit the city of Erbil and underlined that the Takfiri terrorist project is meant to expand to the entire Middle East and that all countries are now under the fire of terrorism, which requires a review of the regional security system. His Eminence also added that terrorism is targeting the entire security system, not a specific system, and concluded that the quick spread of terrorism means that some countries and institutions are empowering them at the financial and intelligence levels. Terrorist acts are no longer random security violations, he finally said, but they have become coherent and organized under an intermediary framework.
The Need to Find a Unified Vision to Counter Terrorism
His Eminence described the sectioning of security problems and responsibilities as wrongful, in reply to the talks about the attacks in Mosul being different from the ones in Basra or that targeting Baghdad is different from targeting Erbil. He stressed that everyone is targeted by Takfiris, but the interim nature of terrorist attacks requires focusing on one region, without another, or suggesting the defense of one component at the expense of another, calling for a unified vision to counter terrorism, its methods and means especially that we live in a region under fire that has become very favorable to terrorist activity. Sayyid Ammar Al Hakim indicated that the unified vision must shift from the provincial level to the national then regional level, stressing the need to have unified counter messages at the national and regional levels.
Orders Prohibiting Political Education in Universities Are an Explicit Violation of the Knowledge-Based Approach
His Eminence called attention to Iraqi universities to one significant duty, which is to provide political education to university students. He affirmed the difference between political education for students and politicization of universities, indicating that there are orders prohibiting political education, which is an explicit violation of the world knowledge-based approach followed by universities across the world that host local and international political figures to deliver lectures and present their political and social views. He considered that university students are educated citizens to whom cultural communication is important, adding that what’s happening in universities today is an attempt to isolate students from their political and social entourage. His Eminence described these attempts as failing, for university students will communicate with elites outside university, giving as an example the policy of “Baathfication” of universities followed by the Baath party while members from the Islamic Dawa, leftist parties and the communist party were active in Iraqi universities. His Eminence called to benefit from the past experiences when developing plans and added that prohibiting students from getting political education is a declaration of failure and proof of limited vision and ideas, wondering: Should we allow politicization of universities while prohibiting political education?!
Provinces in 2040, What Are They to Become?
His Eminence stressed the importance of the strategic planning, alluding to his last visit to Wasit and Basra province during which he suggested to the governors to adopt a strategy for their provinces titled "Provinces in 20140, What Are They to Become?". He said the fellow governors are encouraged to start effectively a strategic planning and that the real work to build Iraq start from the provinces, explaining that any action cannot be a success unless it is compatible and consistent with the strategic plans made for the provinces. He also urged the local governments in provinces to draw up strategic plans within well-defined visions to what should be achieved, adding that the strategic planning will supersede the impromptu works and the non-determination of priorities.
The Iran-US's Rapprochement Is Positive for both Countries' Peoples as well as the Peoples of the Region
His Eminence pointed out to appeasement signs in the region. To him, they are signs because no practical steps have been taken yet, and the most important of which are those of an Iran-US agreement. He said these signs are internationally welcomed, while there is a regional confusion, calling on everybody to work for the common interests and not the individual ones, and to adopt the "win-win" policy. He considered the common interests as important in shaping balanced regional and international relations, stressing the actual need of all parties to reach common agreements that safeguard all parties' interests and involve them. In his opinion, the Iran-US's rapprochement is likely to be positive for both countries' peoples as well as the peoples of the region, for the United States is internationally influential and Iran is regionally influential regarding the Syrian, Lebanese, Bahraini and Afghan issues. He finally commented that the international relations are very important in the life of peoples and nations, since there is no permanent animosity or permanent friendship, rather the peoples' interests are what matter.