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View Diary: The Iraq Election: Defining Success (489 comments)

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  •  Very true... (none)
    I've found one interesting list of today's attacks, over at the Counterterrorism Blog. Here's a link to the entry in question.

    Their last update has the death toll at 35-45 people... I am sure it has climbed since then. Not bloodless, by any means. I was expecting higher double-digits than that, but I also thought I might be way off base, and that truly horrible things might happen today. It turns out that the insurgency was unable to deliver a knockout punch in the face of intense single-day security -- and this has been the case so far, that the insurgents haven't been able to directly confront American forces on predictable battlefields with any success.

    As more reports roll in, it seems likely that the insurgent-led boycott of the election was partially successful -- there are definitely places where voting is not taking place, and it will be near-impossible to impose the will of the elected government on those areas without force. A plan needs to be developed ASAP to bring those regions into the government at a later date -- special elections for a different class of representatives? The Iraqis must do ANYTHING to keep the door open to the Sunnis, and to those who hate both the insurgents and the Americans, for as long as possible.

    The non-participation of Sunnis and insurgents in this election must not become a rationale for a bloody Shiite-initiated purge in the future. In truth, it is the Sunnis who are most likely to bring genocide upon their own heads through their dispossessed paranoia  -- and it would be very easy for the Bush Administration to turn a blind eye to a purge of the Sunni areas until there is nothing left to save.

    Ironically, it may be the insurgents and their grudging supporters whom we'll most need to protect in the future, from a quasi-dictatorial Shiite government that might decide to crush its opposition while America is compelled by political circumstances to look the other way. Similar problems in the Kurdish territories also have the potential to spiral into a full-fledged civil war that would be utterly bereft of idealized "good guys."

    We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are. - Anaïs Nin

    by Valentine on Sun Jan 30, 2005 at 12:11:00 PM PST

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    •  Thanks for the excellent link (none)
      Reading your comments, I was overcome with deja vu.

      Similar things were said and written after Gulf War I about the population of Iraq. Cheney himself gave an analysis similar to yours as late as 1996 as an apologia for not going into Baghdad in 1991.

      The same ethnic and religious divisions remain today. The population has changed in that most of the middle-class have fled and many Iraqis have been killed, wounded, embittered by the US occupation.

      Today, the images of Iraq voter line-ups showed mostly women in black burqas which portends a theocracy in Iraq. The call to vote today and yesterday was issued from the minarets after the call to prayer. oh oh

      To thine own self be true - W.S.

      by Agathena on Sun Jan 30, 2005 at 03:45:35 PM PST

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