Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Under Reported News

While cooking dinner, I tried to find "real" news on CNN and MSNBC without success. All I could find were talk shows discussing Michael Jackson's case. Do these cable channels think we really care about this person? How about reporting extensively about a serious subject like NASA's next space shuttle flight. Oops, that not gossip. Never mind.

The important news of the day is that Iraq may have a new government within a day or two. The Middle East online reported:

Iraq's prime minister-designate Ibrahim Jaafari handed President Jalal Talabani his proposed cabinet list Tuesday, state television reported, after nearly three months of protracted consultations which tested Washington's patience.

Jaafari also unveiled the list before a restricted meeting of his winning United Iraqi Alliance (UIA), said Iraqiya TV. But it was not immediately known when parliament would be asked to approve it.

A senior member of the Shiite-dominated alliance, Jawad Maliki, said "the government will be announced tonight, but no names will immediately be made public".


Iraqi voters must be very patient to wait almost three months for the announcement of the new government. I know it's important to form a government that everyone agrees on. But, this delay is sending the wrong message to the terrorists.

[UPDATE 04/28/05 11:11AM: We have a government. Click here for details.]

Each time I read Jawad Maliki's name, I wonder if he's the same psycho professor who taught us national culture -- another name to Ba'athists' philosophy -- at college. That Jawad had a masters degree in psychology. But, he was the one who needed to see a psychiatrist. If Soran or Maysa are reading this post, they'd definitely agree with me.

If this was year 2002, I would've never criticized this professor. This bring me to the next piece of news:

...From studios in a converted house in a Baghdad neighborhood, Radio Dijla begins its broadcast day. The one year-old broadcaster is Iraq's first talk-radio station.

General Manager Kareem Yusuf says the station takes thousands of calls a day from Iraqis exercising a newfound freedom to express their opinions.

He says during the era of Saddam Hussein, the people were restricted, but now they are starting to express their views more openly.


There's no better example of freedom of speech than the Iraqi bloggers. Did anyone living inside Iraq dare to write freely under Saddam's regime? Salam PAX was the only person who risked his life to bring a glimpse of life in Iraq to our computer screens.

There was another piece of news that made me really happy:

BAGHDAD, 25 Apr 2005 (IRIN) - Newly married couples in Iraq are being given a helping hand from the Ministry of Trade (MoT) in starting a new life.

Couples are being offered building materials for homes at a reduced cost to local market prices, as well as the chance for them to pay in installments.


"I can say that it was one of the best decisions made by this government. I have been waiting for more than three years to get married because my family asked for my husband to provide a home and today we can afford it and build the house of our dreams," Mayada Abdu-Lattef, 29, told IRIN in the Iraqi capital Baghdad.


"I'm a policeman and couldn't offer my wife a new house. But today with this project I can start building my house with good quality materials at a very cheap price. If everything in Iraq was like this project, for sure there would not be people begging in the streets anymore," Ali al-Rabia'a, 31, told IRIN.


This may not sound important to Westerners. Here, newlywed couples with good jobs can easily get a great bank loan, buy a house, have a nice wedding party and a wonderful honeymoon. It's not the same in Iraq, where Iraqi guys must come up with most of the wedding expenses. Most couples live for a few years with the groom's family. This situation usually ends up unpleasantly. There aren't many couples who can even rent an apartment unless the groom has his own business or comes from a rich family. This help from Department of Trade definitely helps newlywed couples to breathe deeper.

Nowadays, life isn't great in Iraq. But as you've heard from many of us, life wasn't better under Saddam's regime. Living under a police government is never good unless someone enjoys slavery of soul and mind.

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