In January, the Iraqi parliament passed a nominal re-Baathification law that was meant to allow thousands of former Baathists to join the Iraqi government. Conservatives and war hawks loudly touted the law’s passage as a sign of success in Iraq. But, as Reuters reported yesterday, the law is not being implemented:
But five months later, implementation of the law is bogged down by infighting between politicians, and the committee once tasked with hunting out Baathists in government has found itself in the odd position of overseeing the process of rehiring them or offering them state pensions.
The government has still not appointed a seven-member panel to replace the deBaathification Committee, whose enthusiastic purge of Baathists from government posts prompted minority Sunni Arabs to accuse them of conducting a witch-hunt.
Juan Cole writes that though the Reuters story is “a refutation of the whole Kagan-Bush-McCain victory narrative of the ‘surge’ or troop escalation,” he doesn’t expect it to be “even be mentioned on American television.”