Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Unreported Good News in Iraq

Read this article today at Commentary Magazine by way of Instapundit. The glaring lack of exposure of the significant positive developments in Iraq by our MSM is a perfect example of their obvious left-leaning political bias. They are happy to report deaths of U.S. soldiers and Iraqi civilians, but when the Surge works and the most violent regions of Iraq are stabilizing? Headlines are chalk full of stories about Don Imus, real estate, etc...

Personally, I am interested in strategic news that actually impacts my family and my country, and a stable Iraq that is no longer a haven for terrorists fit that.

Here are some key excerpts from the article. It is worth reading in it's entirety:

[t]he US military is to hand over security control of the former Sunni insurgent bastion of Anbar province to Iraqi forces in the next 10 days, a US military spokesman announced on Monday . . . Anbar would be the tenth of Iraq’s 18 provinces to be handed back to Iraqi forces by the US-led coalition amid a push to transfer security control of the entire country back to Baghdad. Anbar province in western Iraq, the country’s largest, was the epicentre of a brutal Sunni Arab-led fight against the US military after the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime in 2003. In the early years of the insurgency, US forces fought raging battles in the province, especially in the capital Ramadi and the nearby city of Fallujah.

The security environment in Iraq continues to improve, with all major violence indicators reduced between 40 to 80% from pre-surge levels. Total security incidents have fallen to their lowest level in over four years.

Overall, the communal struggle for power and resources is becoming less violent. Many Iraqis are now settling their differences through debate and the political process rather than open conflict. Other factors that have contributed to a reduction in violence include the revitalization of sectors of the Iraqi economy and local reconciliation measures.

It goes on and on, but the picture is clear. The left is not only not concerned about Iraq, they are petrified of success because it would validate a Bush policy that they have disagreed with from the start, and put the Democratic party in a bad light in an election year.


Mr. Grey Ghost said...

The surge is working and 15 of the 18 benchmarks have been met by the Iraqi gov't (took long enough), of course the liberal media doesn't know what to do with themselves.

Outside the Box said...


Sorry, I forget how to put a straight link. I've forgotten most of that kind of stuff. I'm going to have to relearn it.

Bullfrog said...

I watched the 20 minutes or so of YouTube video documenting the situation in Iraq.

From what I can gather, the journalist was trying to make the argument that things were better in Baghdad when Saddam was in power.

He starts by talking about the means by which Iraqis are protected from harm: walls and checkpoints. He specifically points to areas he is familiar with from childhood where he was able to "have lunch" and roam freely through the streets, and a bridge that used to give him instant access to adjacent areas; but now, due to it being closed, it takes him much longer to make the journey.

This is all pretty inconvenient and I can imagine downright frustrating; one person interviewed even compared his inability to travel to certain areas for fear of harm to "prison".

Another clip, showing a complaining Iraqi shop owner wading through a street flooded with sewage, documents a basic lack of infrastructure. This need is reinforced by footage of children who, for lack of a school system and/or a male breadwinner (I assume due to being killed in the war) have taken to the streets selling goods to support their families. More footage depicts "killing fields" where the unknown dead are buried in shallow, unmarked graves and makeshift graveyards created by families where relatives don't get "proper burial".

I will try to sum up what I think are the main points of the video:

1. Iraq is unsafe.
2. Citizens are less free to travel.
3. Infrastructure is lacking.

I think #1 and #2 were the case while Saddam was still in power. In fact people, including women and children, were being tortured and killed in the hundreds of thousands across religious and ethnic lines BY Saddam's regime. The examples the reporter gave of people who were kidnapped, "in their shops, in front of their houses, while walking the streets" is not a new development, and he did not make a compelling case that it is "worse" than before.

As for #3: when a country is at war, infrastructure becomes a casualty of that war. I would like to see real statistics showing the progress made in restoring infrastructure in Baghdad, as I am of the impression from my reading that a large part of the effort there is to restore goods and services to the people of Iraq.

This reminds me of the Biblical account of the Jews who, once freed from the oppressive captivity of the Egyptian Pharaoh, begged Moses to let them return to their slavery because at least there they had meat to eat.

I am not trying to minimize their suffering, but I believe the person who put that presentation together has at best a myopic view of what is happening to his country.