Across town in a busy shopping area in western Baghdad, a 15-minute gun battle broke out between security guards, more evidence of the authority vacuum.Eh? Iraqna (Orascom Telecom) security goons shooting it out with the Chalabi Boys? What the fuck is that all about? Even if the phones are 2.5G at best, the warfare is fourth-generation with a vengeance.
An Iraqi Interior Ministry spokesman, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak publicly, said armed guards for a cellphone company had killed two guards working for Ahmad Chalabi, an Iraqi politician, after a roadside "misunderstanding."
It could be more significant than you think. Last week, people who appear to have been not fake policemen, but fake fake policemen, abducted 50 or so employees of a Baghdad security firm whose biggest customer is Iraq's biggest mobile network operator. The security firm, perhaps significantly, was owned by Vice-Prez Ghazi al-Yawer's tribe (who are Sunnis). The raiders were originally thought to be unidentified gunmen wearing police uniform, but were later...what's the opposite of "disavowed"?...by the Ministry of the Interior as Police Commandos (read SCIRI torture boys).
Now, we know Chalabi has been ingratiating himself with the Sadrists and anyone else Shia who'll give him houseroom (has anyone else noticed that after his rousting from the government back in November, and his re-self-appointment for "one month", he's *still* minister of oil and chairman of the banking committee?). I'm not saying, I'm just saying...
I think if I started this blog today I'd probably call it the title of this post.