POLITICAL PROGRESS UPDATE….The Iraqi parliament is adjourning for the year:

Iraqi legislators suspended parliamentary sessions Thursday until Dec. 30 because of Muslim religious holidays, ending efforts to pass U.S.-backed legislation aimed at achieving national reconciliation this year.

….Dec. 30 is one day before the end of the current term for parliament. Lawmakers normally would take a recess for two months at that time, but they were expected to extend the term by a month so they could meet in January to pass a budget and other important measures, a senior U.S. official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject.

I doubt very much that any “important measures” will get passed in the January rump session. It’s much more likely that parliament will — barely — pass a budget and then recess again. So that means even if the political climate starts to improve, it’s going to be a minimum of April or May before any important bills get passed, let alone the full package that the U.S. has been insisting on as a sign of political reconciliation.

Nothing surprising here. I don’t think anyone expected any serious progress this year. But still not good news.