Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Iraqi Election Results: A US and UK Nightmare

The Independent this morning reported what everyone has feared and what I have expected: that first results show fundamentalist-backed parties won the elections in Iraq, while the secular and nationalist parties had a poor showing.

The Shia Coalition took 58% of the vote in Baghdad, and they are no friend to the Bush or Blair. The Shia Coalition is an ultra-fundamentalist religious party with strong ties to Iran. A leader in the party is nationalist cleric Maqtada Sadr, Who spent time on the US's most wanted list last year. He'll now be one of the most powerful political and religious figures in the country.

The Sunni party, who campaigns on active armed resistance, earned the second-most representation to the Shia coalition. It should be noted that most Iraqi's voted with their own people, so it was no surprise that the Shia or Sunni parties took their respective percentages. Only the US and UK were surprised citizens didn't vote for a nationalist leaders. US ambassador Zilmay Khalitzad:

"It looks as if people have preferred to vote for their ethnic or sectarian identities," he said. "But for Iraq to succeed there has to be cross-ethnic and cross-sectarian co-operation."

Already, the well-funded American-backed candidates are protesting the election, citing fraud. But let’s come to grips with reality. Times are far worse for your average Iraqi today than it ever was under the leadership of Saddam Hussein.

What have we, the Americans, given to the Iraqi people save the destruction of their homes and cities, massive poverty, scarcity of food, and the threat of being caught up in the nearly daily suicide attacks perpetrated by the extremist groups that are about to win the elections?

Perhaps we need to take a careful look at the conflict, and come to terms with the truth: that most Iraqis consider the Americans an unwelcome guest in the Iraq, and the hope of getting these people to vote for a pro-American government is highly unlikely.

Posted by Scottage at 10:57 AM / | |