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Fugitive Iraqi VP Tours Gulf

As Iraq tries to steady itself, Via Meadia has been losing sleep—particularly over how the Gulf Arab states and Iran use Iraq as a proxy battleground, supporting various political groups or militias in an ongoing struggle for control of politics and oil.

Last week, fugitive Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi, who has been hiding from Iraqi security in Kurdistan for months, made it to Qatar for what was billed by the Qataris as an “official visit.” It must have been a friendly encounter: The Gulf Arab states have found Hashemi a natural ally as current Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, Hashemi’s enemy in Baghdad, continues to cozy up to Iran. Where is Hashemi now? He went straight to Riyadh, of course.

It looks like the Gulf Arab states are maneuvering to use Hashemi as a tool to block the expansion of Iranian influence in Iraq. Stay tuned.

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