Beyond Words

The Blog Formerly Known as "Nagoftaniha"

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Islamic Republic of Iraq?

I heard in the news that the coalition led by Sistani is ahead in the Iraqi elections and may form the next Iraqi government. In that case, can't we assume this will multiply problems for the US in the region?
Aren't we heading towards a situation with two neighbouring Islamic Republics?
I think it's time for Bush and his parrot (Rice) to come up with a new plan.

Read more: Secrect Elections

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Democracy For All!

Now that President Bush has given democracy to Iraq and Afghanistan and has decided to root out injustice from the world, it would have been nice if he could give democracy to the following countries:
Central African Republic
Equatorial Guinea
Ivory Coast
North Korea
Saudi Arabia
United Arab Emirates
The list is in alphabetic order and he doesn't need to give democracy in the same order. I leave it up to him. For example, he can start from the smaller countries and continue from there until he reaches China. As you might have noticed, I didn't include Iran. As an Iranian, I'm not unbiased toward my own country. I thought if I didn't bring up Iran, he might pass over it. If you think I missed any country, please let me know, and I will add it.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Victory for Democracy?

Has this ever happened to you? You wake up in the morning and think to yourself perhaps the last four years were only a bad nightmare, and in fact a person by the name of George W. Bush is not the president of the United States. Well, unfortunately we will not wake up from this nightmare for the next four years.

Tonight, George Bush, in his State of the Union speech, will mostly talk about Iraq. In fact, I'm of the opinion that the Iraqi elections were scheduled in such a way as to precede the State of the Union. This is to avoid any major embarrassment in case things didn't go according to plan. It would be nice to have Allawi in the box, right beside Laura Bush, as the symbol of the new democratic and free Iraq. Actually, Chalabi was supposed to play this part, but since his acting was not satisfactory, they found a more suitable substitute.

Undoubtedly, George Bush will talk about how he exported democracy to Afghanistan and Iraq, and will castigate those who were saying this was not achievable and would backfire. In his own mind, he has defeated his opponents, and the Bush Doctrine has triumphed.

Meanwhile, American liberals have left the field wide open for their opponents, and are totally silent. It is not the first time that the liberals have behaved this way. After every triumph for Bush and his gang, no matter how artificial and unrealistic, the liberals surrender their position. We have seen similar events in the past, of which the most memorable episode was right after 9/11, when the Democratic Party had a total melt down, and let Bush and his gang do all they wanted without raising any objections.

Now we have to see how much of this "victory" for democracy is real and how much is a figment of Bush's imagination. How can one call an election where a large minority of the people did not participate legitimate? I wonder how those who say about 60 percent of the eligible voters participated came up with those figures. Were international observers present at the polling stations to validate these claims? As we know, no international observers were to be seen anywhere, since they were fearful for their lives. Even if it had been claimed that 99 percent of people participated, no one could repudiate such a claim. So, it is probable that the organizers of this election had decided beforehand to choose a believable figure.

Some believe that 60 percent participation is rather high even in a Western context. Now even if we assume the figure to be correct, these observers ignore the fact that although participation is lower in some Western countries, and even in some developing countries where elections take place, the main difference with Iraq is in the fact that the whole society, including all minorities, normally participate in elections on an equal basis. In the case of Iraq, this was not the case and, for various reasons, the majority of Iraqi Sunnis did not participate. For example, let’s assume there are elections in the US and all the racial minorities (which includes Blacks, Hispanics etc.) do not participate in the elections and boycott it. Can we claim that such elections would be legitimate?

Some say the reason the Sunnis boycotted the elections was the fact that, before the fall of Saddam, they were in control, and that they do not wish to accept the new reality. Who are the Sunnis that these people allude to? The majority of Iraqi Sunnis are ordinary people, such as bakers, construction workers, porters, etc. They did not have any association whatsoever with Saddam and his gang of thugs. If Saddam and his clan were brutalizing the people, we cannot blame the Sunni farmer. The Sunni parties decided to boycott these election, not because they were losing their power, but because of their demand for a postponement of the elections, so the situation becomes calmer and allows everyone to participate. But Allawi was against such demands; his Washington masters had order him to.

The Iraqi situation after these elections does not seem to be stable. If there was a probability of civil war in Iraq before, these one-sided elections have increased that probability. Whether Allawi and his gang will be able to subdue the Sunnis’ anger is something that we will find out in the coming weeks and months. For now, Bush is ecstatic. He has been able to sell an election, in whose midst hundreds of people were killed and maimed, as a victory for democracy.

Read more: Secrect Elections

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