Great, great news.
The Iraqis have come up with a good constitution that, despite some disagreements, can certainly be fixed up once all groups are fully represented in parliament along. It would appear from a glance that the country’s political society is split completely along ethnic and religious lines, but that’s simply not the case, and the results from the December elections will prove that. There are a myriad of interests working for influence. The Iraqi voter hasn’t been one for long, but they are proving smarter and more politically than ethnically savvy, as they are moving away from these superficial biases toward whichever parties can govern the country best.All politics aside, if the Iraqis can form themselves a solid and sustainable republic, what an achievement it will be.
Now that the constitution looks ever more likely to be approved, it will be important for us here in the west to focus on the December elections as well. We need to make sure that party-backed militias don’t wield undue influence over individuals and how they vote, we must make sure that their cronies don’t tamper with those votes behind the scenes, and we must make sure that, no matter what the real outcome of the vote is, that power transfers peacefully.Publius Pundit - Blogging the democratic revolution
Saturday is the vote. Perhaps while the Iraqis are casting their ballots, we Americans, as well as focusing "on the December elections", can recall why those elections are possible:
Army Sgt. Michael T. Crockett of Soperton, Georgia, died 14 July 14 2003 on patrol in Baghdad, Iraq when he came under RPG attack. Sergeant Crockett was 3rd Platoon Bravo Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, Fort Stewart, Georgia. Sergeant Crockett was 27.
Marine Sgt. Kirk Allen Straseskie of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, drowned 19 May 2003 in a canal near Al Hillah, Iraq, when he attempted to rescue the crewmembers of a Marine CH-46 helicopter that went down in the canal. Sergeant Straseskie, 23, was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, Camp Pendleton, California.
Navy Chief Joel Egan Baldwin of Arlington, Virginia died 21 December 2004, in Mosul, Iraq, when a suicide bomber entered his dining facility and detonated an improvised explosive device. Chief Baldwin was assigned to Navy Mobile Construction Battalion 77, Gulfport, Mississippi. Chief Baldwin left behind a wife and daughter.
Air Force Airman 1st Class Elizabeth N. Jacobson of Riviera Beach, Florida died 28 September 2005 near Camp Bucca, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near her convoy vehicle. Airman Jacobson was assigned to the 17th Security Forces Squadron, Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas.
Airman Jacobson was 21.