This from The Fourth Rail -
By Bill Roggio
Sistani, Talabani and Sunni parties call for an end to the political deadlock for the selection of the Iraqi Prime Minister
Pressure on Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari to withdraw his nomination as the United Iraqi Alliance candidate as the next prime minister increases, this time from some very influential quarters. Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, the most respected and influential Shiite religious leader in Iraq, has reluctantly entered the fray. This indicates the gravity of the situation, as Sistani does not wish to become the arbiter of Iraqi politics.
Further calls for Jaafari's resignation come from outside the UIA. President Jalal Talabani, the leader of the Kurdish alliance, has "informed a committee from the Alliance that the Kurdish bloc's decision to reject Jaafari was final," and, according to Reuters, "I think the majority of other groups, or all the other groups, are rejecting Dr Jaafari as prime minister."
Previously, the calls for Jaafari's resignation came from different factions within the UIA, including SCIRI's AbdulMahdi and Jalal al-Deen al-Saghir, Mohammed Ismail Khazali of the Fadhila party, and independent UIA member Kasim Daoud. Now that Sistani has openly withdrawn support, Jaafari's time is short. Jaafari's Dawa party must decide if it will support him to the bitter end, in defiance of Sistani's council and the united factions outside the UIA. Will Jaafari and Sadr stand against Iraq?
Sadr must decide if it will bring the Mahdi Army to the streets of Baghdad, Najaf and Karbala and force a showdown with the U.S. Army and Marines, and the Iraqi security forces. Iranian plans to gain influence via Jaafari and Sadr are close to being in shambles. The real questions are will Iran risk an open confrontation with the Coalition and Iraqi government by backing an open insurrection by supporting Sadr's Mahdi Army and elements of the Badr Brigades said to be under their control, and will they risk losing their most influential and powerful pieces on the Iraqi chess board?
Click 'Read All' link to read 'comments' to the above item as well. This is quite enlightening.