Thursday, July 29, 2004


Definitely the Chicken!

For over a year now, the political and security situation in Iraq has been going from bad to worse.

Democracy, it is often argued, cannot be established before the security situation is brought under control.

Those people who make this argument often overlook, or are unaware of, how deeply patriotism runs in this country. Any government that is seen as a "puppet" government will not be able to govern without the use of brutal force. Unless that force is overwhelmingly ruthless and oppressive, it will be resisted! An added, complicating, feature is that quite a number of evil forces are damaging the country and killing its people under the banner of resistance!

The security situation will therefore get worse, making the implementation of democracy that more difficult… the "chicken-and-egg situation" has been mentioned repeatedly!

If we really want a democratic system of government in Iraq, and if we believe in such a system strongly and sincerely enough, then we should make the necessary effort to implement it under the present conditions (the US Administration has already missed better conditions).

The chicken in this case definitely comes first.

A closer analogy would have been the "horse and cart".


Your anger at USA comes through your writing "loud and clear". Do you have any answers to improving the situation in Iraq? I do not mean to be critical because you are living the reality. Iraqis are a proud people and I understand your love of your country. Is the only answer for the coalition to leave? Are we helping in any meaningful way? Are those who work with the coalition to rebuild Iraq, joining the IP and INC all misguided? Will Iraq be able to overcome its problems if just left alone? Will those Iraqis who lost loved ones ever forgive the coalition for the misguided thoughts that we were ridding Iraq of a tyrant who killed and tortured his people?

I agree with you that democracy is the only way to legitimate a new Iraqi government. However, the resistance is, and has been, targerting elected officials. In my view, this makes implementation of your complex plan for local elections problematic. For that reason, I still don't still think you solved the "chicken and the egg" problem regarding "violence" and formation of a new government.

Still further, no form of representative government will satisfy the Salafist Jihadis or the true believes within the Baath "resitance." These groups want to domintate your country through the barrel of a gun. At best, your solution might pull away some support from other segments of the "resistance." IMHO, the better solution is for you and all Iraqis of good will to renounce all violent "resistance" now and energize the people to work through political means to mold their country.

Organize now! There is great power in active grass roots organizations. I have done so in my own country and have won battles against entrenched political and monied corporate interests. These were fights where everyone said we were doomed to failure.

This is the time to get involved while the Iraqi system is still new. Your ideas for spreading power to locally elected leaders is a good one. Act on it. There is grave danger in the Iraqi people falling back into the old habit of seeking a strong leader to take responsibilty for governing. Such habits invite the rise of another despot. It is only through vigilance and active citzen involvement that Iraq can avoid that fate.

I wish you the best of luck.


Thank you for your blogs Abu Khaleel. Most of us Americans who supported the war did so with at least partially unselfish motives. We would like to see democracy succeed in your country. We appreciate your suggestions and hope that they are noticed by our leaders.

If we left abruptly like we did in 1991 you would hate us for leaving so soon. We are in a no win situation.

I don't think it is a chicken-egg situation. Law and order is the first necessary condition for any society . It is the attitude of the leaders which is crucial for democracy to develop. Iraqi leaders have chosen an unselfish path of fair and equal treatment for all citizens. This is actually more important than democracy, in which the people can be misled and abused by selfish politicans. Democracy is not a cure-all, actually it can be a bit of a headache.

You make a valid point. I think almost everyone (including the US administration) wants Iraq to end up a stable and prosperous democracy.

The key question is, where do we go from here, and how do we get there? Looking at what happened in Somalia in the early 1990s, it doesn't take much imagination to see what might happen in Iraq if the US pulls its troops out before a stable government is in place. The big question is, how do we get a stable government in place that is not viewed as a "puppet" by the local populace?

You say that "If we really want a democratic system of government in Iraq, and if we believe in such a system strongly and sincerely enough, then we should make the necessary effort to implement it under the present conditions (the US Administration has already missed better conditions)." When were the "better" conditions???

Americans who founded this country fought brutally for their independence against Brittain. Now Americans are fighting for YOURS. We are spending BILLIONS in money and, more importantly, our children's blood. While I look forward to your suggestions on how to bring democracy to Iraq, most of your posting seem to just be complaining with no real solutions. Please know that we want our children to come home as soon as possible. We are only there to HELP YOU build a more stable and secure Iraq since this also benefits us. Please keep that in mind when blogging.
Thank you and be well.

This post is not an island!

Quite a number of people who have posted comments here and elsewhere, to the effect: “most of your posting seem to just be complaining with no real solutions”.

May I draw your attention to the left side bar. I have an ENITRE blog dedicated to answering this question (Is There a Solution?).

I have also anticipated and attempted to answer a number of the questions you justifiably raise. All you need to do is do some more reading of the posts.

Abu, regardless (or irregardless, depending on your lexiconographical upbringing) of your positions, I want to thank you for taking the time and care to make your position known. Indicative of the tough dilemmas we all face, even pro-Iraq-Bush-be-damned types like myself have a hard time trying to find the handle on all that ails ya'll.... Blaming the perpetrators of actual crimes instead of the 'action' that set up the 'condition' for the crime would be a start. Good people make good decisions when given accurate facts....

I would just like to say that it's lovely how the Muslims of Iraq have reacted to the murder of Christians in Baghdad and elsewhere. The candlelight vigils are truly inspiring, the signs and placards carried by Muslims, calling for peace and makes my heart weap.

Oh, wait, this is not what has happened at all! Just as Iraq's 200,000 Jews had to leave the country in the 1940s now the Christians have to leave as well. And many of them are. Let's all credit Saddam for preserving this secterian tolerance for so long, even as he killed a million Iraqis, and as many Iranians.

You sure do have a valid argument with your democracy claims. Let's see how much democracy happens once US and UK troops pull out. How long before Saddam -- or someone just like him -- is back in power, mate, how long? I give it three weeks.

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