Monday, August 22, 2005

The Dark Future As We Both See It

Dear Zan,

I read the report a few hours before you posted it in the comments sections.

My dear friend,

I sobbed as both you and your father sobbed. To be more precise, I cried without tears many times during the last week. I feel void inside. The reality of Iraq's future has hit me hard.

Do you remember the private conversation among a group of Iraqi bloggers when you said, "Iraqis can't govern themselves." That statement sums up all our problems. We seem to be a country that likes torture. A country that likes brutal leadership.

Our people, my friend, don't call themselves Iraqis any more. They call themselves, Shia, Sunni, Kurds, Assyrians, Chaldeans and other names EXCEPT Iraqis. Do you see the soul of our problem? We don't belong to a unified nationality. We belong to a tribe, an ethnic group, a religious sector - NOT Iraq.

When Saddam was removed from power, most of the international community thought this great nation of mostly educated and intellectual citizens would overcome their differences and put their hands together to build a democratic country. They were wrong in their assumption. The Iraqi people were tired of 35 years of a brutal ruling government, who oppressed minorities. We found ourselves drifting to the fractional identity instead of the unifying one.

Then came the governing council which, I believe, is the root of our political problems. The American administration thought it was a great idea to bring Hakim and his kind into the government. Why on earth did we remove a secular government to replace it with pro-Iran groups? What was the logic used in the selection of the governing council? Why couldn't they install more like Iyad Allawi and Adnan Al-Pachachi?

With the appointment of pro-Iran parties in the governing council, came the power of the militia. When a country doesn't have an army or a police force, gangs take control of the streets. You and me live in the United States. We see it in the poor parts of American cities where rape, drug abuse, murder and other crimes are the way of life.

Did I see this coming? Yes, I did. What I didn't see coming is the refusal of many Sunnis and other minorities to vote in the January election. Wasn't that great to hand over Iraq to the religious parties then cry over it?

It's true, the Sunnis and other small minorities represent less than 30 percent of the Iraqi population. But, their vote was going to bring balance to the new Iraqi National Assembly. We the minorities would have had more control over Iraq's future. Unfortunately, our false pride and failure to put our differences above the interest of Iraq were more powerful. We again failed ourselves and Iraq.

Since the elections, the power of the militias has strengthened many fold. With the power of militia ALWAYS comes the power of abuse and torture. It reminded people of everything they feared during Saddam's regime and brought back all the bad memories and worries.

The constitution is a disaster. If approved as it's written right now, it will strip Iraqi women from the best rights they enjoyed in the Middle East. Me and you, my friend, will need to make copies of Fatin Hamama movie, "أريد حلا" and send it to the young Iraqi women who haven't seen the movie yet. After all, they need to understand their new rights.

I have no doubt the ordinary American people want the best for Iraqi people. But, with 2006 senate elections and 2008 presidential elections not that far away, I'm expecting a quick exit from Iraq. Politicians from both sides, liberals and conservatives, have started to say, "They had elections. They'll have a constitution very soon. We did our best. We can't do any more." Not exactly in those words, but something along those lines.

Politicians follow the wind's direction. The wind has changed regarding Iraq. This war has resulted in too many deaths from both sides and the huge spending of the taxpayer money. All this would have gone well with the American voters. But, when that money and blood goes to establish an Iranian-style government and to strip Iraqi women from their rights, then the politicians lose the hearts and minds of their devoted voters.

We all failed Iraq. Iraqi people failed Iraq when they refused to unite for the sake of a bleeding land. The allied governments failed Iraq when they did a poor job in establishing a reasonable government, a poorer job in establishing law and order and gave a blind eye to the growing control of the militias in different parts of the country.

We all contributed to the dark future of Iraq because each of us had a different priority.

UPDATE 08/23/2005
Let me remind everyone that this is my house. Under my house rules there's no name calling, no racist comments and no personal attacks. Our subject is Iraq. It's NOT about Isreal, Arabs or Martians.

I'm going to delete any comments I feel aren't related to the subject. I hope everyone keep their temper under control before they push the "Publish Comment" button.

UPDATE 09/04/2005
Click here to read the published version of the post.

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