Third Party & Independents Archives

Iraq: Reality Check Please

Can any rational, reasonable person even keeping half an ear on the news out of Iraq possibly believe that the country is on the road to democracy? Violence grows on a daily basis with U.S. military official announcing that four Marines, from the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, were killed Friday in three separate incidents while “conducting security and stability operations,” in al Anbar province, while at least seven Iraqi’s lost their lives in the ongoing battles in and around Al- Falluja.

How can elections be conducted under such an umbrella violence? Would Americans given similar circumstances turn out in large numbers to vote?

Meanwhile, President Bush praised interim Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi and detailed his plan for stabilizing Iraq during his weekly radio address Saturday, stating, "[I]n less than three months, Prime Minister Allawi and his government have accomplished a great deal, despite persistent violence in parts of Iraq." What have the Iraqi’s been able to accomplish Mr. Bush? Has the violence lessoned, are the Iraqi people any closer to democracy then they were under Saddam’s rule. How long before the country fractures and Civil War bloodies the Iraqi people even more?

And consider this from yesterdays Washington Post:

BAGHDAD, Sept. 25 -- Less than four months before planned national elections in Iraq, attacks against U.S. troops, Iraqi security forces and private contractors number in the dozens each day and have spread to parts of the country that had been relatively peaceful, according to statistics compiled by a private security firm working for the U.S. government.

Attacks over the past two weeks have killed more than 250 Iraqis and 29 U.S. military personnel, according to figures released by Iraq's Health Ministry and the Pentagon. A sampling of daily reports produced during that period by Kroll Security International for the U.S. Agency for International Development shows that such attacks typically number about 70 each day. In contrast, 40 to 50 hostile incidents occurred daily during the weeks preceding the handover of political authority to an interim Iraqi government on June 28, according to military officials.

Reports covering seven days in a recent 10-day period depict a nation racked by all manner of insurgent violence, from complex ambushes involving 30 guerrillas north of Baghdad on Monday to children tossing molotov cocktails at a U.S. Army patrol in the capital's Sadr City slum on Wednesday. On maps included in the reports, red circles denoting attacks surround nearly every major city in central, western and northern Iraq, except for Kurdish-controlled areas in the far north. Cities in the Shiite Muslim-dominated south, including several that had undergone a period of relative calm in recent months, also have been hit with near-daily attacks.

I think its time for a reality check.

Posted by V. Edward Martin at September 25, 2004 2:41 PM