Dr. Ayad Allawi (Iyad Allawi) was "unanimously nominated" to be Iraq's "interim prime minister" by "Iraq's U.S.-appointed" Iraqi Governing Council on Friday, May 28, 2004. Allawi is a Shiite Muslim politician and former exile "whose party was supported by the CIA".  
Ayad Alawi "was born in Baghdad in 1946 into a wealthy Shiite family of prominent business leaders." As a "young man", Allawi joined the Baath Party after it "gained control of Iraq" and "organized party meetings at his medical school. He left Baghdad for advanced medical studies in London in 1971, eventually becoming a neurologist." It is reported that "Dr. Alawi occasionally treated young Saddam Hussein for minor ailments."  
Allawi, before his 1976 resignation from the Baath Party, "was in charge of all Baath Party organizations in Europe." Following his resignation, "Hussein tried to lure him back with threats and bribes. When he refused and subsequently struck up a relationship with the British intelligence service (MI6), he was reportedly placed on a liquidation list by Hussein."  
"Iraqi secret police were sent to assassinate Allawi in London in 1978, bursting into his bedroom and hacking him with an ax. He suffered serious injuries and spent nearly a year in a hospital. He continues to walk with a limp because of injuries to his leg suffered in the attack." 
The attack on his life helped persuade Allawi in 1979 to begin "organizing former Baathists in exile, like himself. ... And after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990, suddenly Mr. Alawi and his organization were in great demand. Financial support flowed in from Britain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and, eventually, the CIA. That year he founded the Iraqi National Accord." 
"After shuttling between Kurdish areas, Syria and Jordan, Allawi, who has good ties with Washington, settled in London. INA is made up mostly of defectors from the military and intelligence services, and belongs to the Group of Four."  
"As leader of the INA, [Allawi] was embraced by Britain and the United States. In 1996, he worked with the CIA to plot a coup that was to involve Iraqi army generals toppling Hussein. But the Iraqi leader penetrated the plot and arrested and executed many of its operatives."  
"Allawi returned to Baghdad shortly after Hussein's government fell in April 2003, running his party from an abandoned Baath Party office. Many members of his party are former military officers, and he has advocated a greater role for former soldiers in the country's new security services." 
A "qualified medical doctor," Dr. Allawi has "no army or intelligence background." Allawi claims the "support of hundreds of activists abroad and thousands of disillusioned government and party officials inside Iraq."  
Setting the Stage for Rule
According to the February 14, 2004, edition of The Economist:
- "The chairman of the council's security committee, Ayad Allawi, has begun creating a new version of the feared secret police. Iraq may well need a counter-insurgency force, but Mr Allawi's rivals accuse him of recruiting former torturers to man a new apparatus of oppression."
The Boston Globe reported on May 14, 2004, that
- "Ali Allawi ... Iraq's new interim defense minister ... a technocrat who is related to pro-American exile leaders Ayad Allawi of the Iraqi National Accord and Ahmed Chalabi of the Iraqi National Congress, has won a measure of respect from Iraqis in his former job as trade minister.
- "Now that he is minister of defense, however, and in charge of security, the issue most important to Iraqis, he'll have to walk a fine line between working with the occupying authority and advocating for autonomous Iraqi interests."
Allawi "Intelligence" Reports
Saddam "Connected" to Al Qaeda
"Saddam had ordered Atta training," according to Allawi, identified as "a member of Iraq's seven-man presidential committee" in the December 15, 2003, The Indian Express.
A handwritten memo dated July 1, 2001, that was published "exclusively" in the December 14, 2003, London Daily Telegraph "provides a short resume of a three-day 'work programme'" which alleged September 11, 2001 "mastermind" Mohammad Atta "had undertaken at [Palestinian terrorist] Abu Nidal's base in Baghdad."
"The details of Atta's visit are contained in [the] secret memo, written to Hussein by the former head of Iraqi intelligence service Tahir Jalil Habbush Al-Tikriti, it said." A media report stated that Atta's training had been "at the instance of deposed Iraqi President Saddam Hussein."
"Although Iraqi officials refused to disclose how and where they had obtained the document, Ayad Allawi, a member of Iraq's ruling seven-man presidential committee, said the document was genuine.
- 'We are uncovering evidence all the time of Saddam's involvement with Al Qaeda,' Allawi said. 'But this is the most compelling piece of evidence that we have found so far. It shows that not only did Saddam have contacts with Al Qaeda, he had contact with those responsible for the September 11 attacks.'"
However, Joe Conason wrote in Salon on December 18, 2003: 
- "Among those currently cooperating in this political jihad are members of the Iraqi Governing Council, journalists at London's right-wing Daily Telegraph, and the eminently respectable William Safire of the New York Times. Last Sunday, the Telegraph blared a front-page story claiming that a newly discovered document memo proves Iraqi intelligence assisted 9/11 mastermind Mohammed Atta, in Baghdad, during the summer of 2001. The Telegraph identified the source who provided the memo as Dr. Ayad Allawi, a member of the Iraqi Governing Council.
- "The very next day, Safire promoted the Telegraph's 'scoop' in an Op-Ed column on the capture of Saddam. As a fervent believer in the covert connection between Saddam and Osama bin Laden, he must have been elated by this fresh documentation of his theory. The Times columnist lent further plausibility to the story by identifying Allawi as 'an Iraqi leader long considered reliable by intelligence agencies.'"
- "Someday, plausible proof may emerge that implicates Saddam in al-Qaida's crimes, but this memo won't quite do. Newsweek's Mark Hosenball and Michael Isikoff report that the document provided by Allawi is almost certainly fraudulent (like those papers concerning Iraq's purchases of uranium yellowcake from Niger). As Hosenball and Isikoff explain:
- "'The new document, supposedly written by the chief of the Iraqi intelligence service ... doesn't say exactly when Atta was supposed to have actually flown to Baghdad. But the memo is dated July 1, 2001, and [Telegraph reporter Con] Coughlin himself places the trip as the summer of 2001.
- "'The problem with this, say U.S. law enforcement officials, is that the FBI has compiled a highly detailed time line for Atta's movements throughout the spring and summer of 2001 based on a mountain of documentary evidence, including airline records, ATM withdrawals and hotel receipts. Those records show Atta crisscrossing the United States during this period -- making only one overseas trip, an 11-day visit to Spain that didn't begin until six days after the date of the Iraqi memo.'"
"The second part of the memo, which is headed 'Niger Shipment', contains a report about an unspecified shipment -- believed to be uranium -- that it says has been transported to Iraq via Libya and Syria." 
WMD in "45 Minutes"
Saddam Stashed Billions
The International Herald Tribune reported on December 30, 2003, that Allawi told "two London-based Arab newspapers he had information that Saddam Hussein had informed his interrogators of stashing billions of dollars in banks around the world and that Saddam was providing interrogators with the names of those who control the funds."
Allawi "told the newspapers Al Hayat and Asharq Al Awsat that the Governing Council estimated that Saddam had siphoned off $40 billion during his years in power and that it was searching banks in Switzerland, Japan, Germany and other countries for the money.
"But a U.S. official dismissed as 'completely wrong' the idea that Saddam had secreted away so much money or had provided information about it to his interrogators."
Allawi becomes Iraq's interim Prime Minister
The outgoing Iraqi Governing Council (IGC) - a creation of the U.S. - announced Allawi's appointment as interim Prime Minister on May 29, 2004. Allawi's appointment was viewed as a move to pre-empt moves by the U.N and U.S. to draft someone seen as independent of the occupation forces. writes  
According to the Washington Post, Allawi was regarded by some U.S. officials as a compromise candidate. "Although he is secular, he reportedly has the support of the country's top Shiite cleric (Grand Ayatollah al-Sistani) [which is key because Shiites make up a majority of the population], and he has served as the Governing Council's point man on security issues. He also has welcomed Sunni Muslims and ethnic Kurds into his political organization and promoted reconciliation with former members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party, a group he supported more than 30 years ago," according to Rajiv Chandrasekaran in the May 29, 2004, Washington Post. 
Since the handover of power to Allawi in late June, he has announced that a new internal intelligence agency would be created to undermine those behind the string of attacks on U.S and Iraqi forces. "We are determined to bring down all the hurdles that stand in the way of our democracy," Allawi told journalists announcing the new agency. 
In mid-July, the Bagdad correspondent for the Sydney Morning Herald, Paul McGeogh, reported that two eye-witnesses stated that the week prior to the handover of power that Allawi had drawn a pistol and executed up to six people detained for suspected attacks on Iraqi and U.S forces. Allawi's office has denied that he had visited the Al-Amariyah security centre in Bagdad's suburbs or that he carried a gun. U.S Ambassador to Iraq, John Negroponte, dismissed the claims without investigating them. 
After the statements by the witnesses, McGeogh wrote of Allawi that his "every response to the Iraq mess is that of a hard man: he threatens martial law; he warns he might shut down sections of the media; he suggests he might delay elections. His Justice Minister is bringing back the death penalty; his Defence Minister warns he'll chop off insurgents' hands and heads." 
"He tells people he's a 'tough guy'. And friends and enemies alike resort to the same page of the thesaurus when they talk about him: 'willing to be ruthless,' says one; 'potential for brutality,' says another; 'muscular law enforcement comes naturally to him,' concludes a third Iraqi voice," McGeogh wrote.
- Future of Iraq Project
- Iraqi Interim Government
- Iraqi Interim Government Members
- Iraqi sovereignty: June 30, 2004.
- Iraqi sovereignty: Exit Strategy from Iraq
- New Iraq
- Post-war Iraq
- regime change
- Iyad Allawi, Neocon Europe, accessed 14 May, 2009.
- Stanley Reed, "After Saddam: A Power Vacuum May Give Washington Pause," BusinessWeek, August 12, 2002: "Indeed, intramural rivalry is running strong. There is friction, for instance, between Chalabi and Ayad Allawi, a former senior member of Saddam's Baath Party who left Iraq in the 1970s and heads the Iraqi National Accord, a longstanding dissident group. Chalabi, a political liberal, has admirers in Washington, but Allawi's group is believed to have better connections to the Baath Party and the Iraqi military."
- Adam Daifallah, "Interim Leaders are a Mixed Bag," New York Sun, February 28, 2003: "Mr. Allawi's group, comprised mainly of former Baathist associates of Saddam, has received funding from the CIA and has unsuccessfully worked with American intelligence for years to oust Saddam through coup attempts."
- Nicolas Pelham, "Rival former exile groups clash over security in Iraq," The Financial Times, December 11, 2003.
- Michael T. Klare, "Fighting For Oil -- Still," agence global, April 1, 2004: "The Erinys contract first aroused controversy last fall, when it was disclosed that its major investors included figures close to Ahmad Chalabi, founder of the Iraqi National Congress and member of the Iraq Governing Council. Other council members, including Ayad Allawi of the Iraqi National Accord, charged that Chalabi was using his position on the IGC to funnel lucrative contracts to his cronies in the INC at the expense of national unity."
- "British-educated Surgeon is New Iraqi Prime Minister. A British-educated neurosurgeon who spent 30 years in exile in Britain, and who has close links with both the CIA and MI6, was named as Iraq's new interim prime minister last night," Guardian/UK, May 28, 2004.
- Irwin Arieff, "UN's Brahimi 'Respects' Choice of Iraqi Leader," Reuters, May 28, 2004.
- Charles Wolfson, "The Politics Behind Iraq's New PM," CBS News, May 28, 2004.
- Michael Georgy, "Iraqis Have Doubts Over Choice of Interim Premier," Reuters, May 28, 2004.
- Barry Schweid, "White House praises selection of Iraqi exile as prime minister," AP, May 28, 2004.
- Warren Hoge and Steven R. Weisman, "Surprising Choice for Premier of Iraq Reflects U.S. Influence," New York Times, May 29, 2004.
- Rajiv Chandrasekaran, "Former Exile Is Selected As Interim Iraqi Leader. Bremer, Brahimi Endorse Governing Council's Choice," Washington Post, May 29, 2004.
- Justin Huggler, "Iraqi with MI6 links is new prime minister," Independent/UK, May 29, 2004.
- Alissa J. Rubin and Maggie Farley, "Iraqi Council Nominates a Prime Minister," Los Angeles Times, May 29, 2004.
- "Former exile starts work on post-transition cabinet, Najaf truce wobbles," AFP, May 29, 2004.
- Joel Brinkley, "A Guide for Hard Times: Iyad Alawi," New York Times, May 29, 2004.
- "UN Sidelined in Choice of Iraqi Leader. White House struggles to defend the selection of candidate who is hardly known in his own country," Guardian/UK, May 29, 2004.
- Mike Allen and Robin Wright, "Pick Appears to Catch Bush Administration Off Guard," Washington Post, May 29, 2004.
- Dexter Filkins, "Exile With Ties to C.I.A. Is Named Premier of Iraq," New York Times, May 29, 2004.
- Hamza Hendawi, "Iraqi panel backs member for premier," AP, May 29, 2004.
- Spencer Abraham, "Iraq'd: Zipless Coup," The New Republic, May 29, 2004.
- "A Hollow Sovereignty for Iraq," New York Times Op-Ed, May 29, 2004.
- Melinda Liu, "Betting on an Old Horse. The CIA finally scores a coup in Iraq--even if it wasn't planned--when the Governing Council agrees on a new leader," Newsweek, June 7, 2004 (Issue).
- "Allawi's rocky road to the top", Sydney Morning Herald, July 17 2004.
- Dean Yates, "Allawi reveals plan for domestic spy agency", Sydney Morning Herald, July 17, 2004.
- Paul McGeough, "Allawi shot prisoners in cold blood: witnesses", Sydney Morning Herald, July 17, 2004.
- Paul McGeogh, "Hard man for a tough country", Sydney Morning Herald, July 17, 2004.
- Rory McCarthy, "Allawi ally paid reporters to turn up: PM admits officials handed out money at press briefings", The Guardian (UK), January 13, 2005.
- Jon Lee Anderson, "A man of the shadows: Can Iyad Allawi hold Iraq together?", New Yorker, January 17, 2005.