The Washington Post reports on the election:
" According to preliminary returns, which will be certified in three days, the largely Shiite coalition known as the United Iraqi Alliance won 48.2 percent of the vote, the low end of what its officials had predicted. A coalition of two main Kurdish parties won 25.7 percent of the vote, and a bloc led by interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi got 13.8 percent. Together, the three coalitions accounted for nearly 88 percent of the vote, making them the dominant players in the National Assembly, which will choose a largely ceremonial president and two deputy presidents. They, in turn, will appoint a powerful prime minister who will choose a Cabinet."
Also note that 8.5 million people voted, and this turned out to be about 58% of the vote (I had predicted 60%). I think this is a great turnout, and everyone, I hope, will see it as such. I am also glad that the United Iraqi Alliance (Sistani’s party, but also includes Sunnis and others) won just under 50% of the vote. It should be easier to form a majority that is more moderate than would have been the case say, if the UIA won 60% of the vote.
If you are still of the mind that the regime change in Iraq has no effect on the rest of the region, note this Lee Smith article on Ammar Abdulhamid, a liberal Syrian. The liberals in the region, says Smith, "seem to be gathering a little momentum."
The Islamic world, frozen in time by its obdurate allegiance to tradition, would have continued its lethargy had it not been awakened by those desiring the noble mission of spreading freedom. Usama bin Laden - a cretin by any standard of civility - unwittingly woke up the sleeping dogs and now must pay the price. Where there is a suicide bomber there are hundreds of people yearning to be free and willing to work for it. The extremists can harm but not undo the age-old desire for people to live freely in a civilized society instead of subsisting in mountains, hudled with old Soviet arms talking about the rewards of a hereafter that aint never gonna come.
Two things validate this election - the blood shed by enemies to prevent it, and the pathetic whining ululation of the MSM in their attempts to find bad news in it. Piss on both of them.
Walter - Well said. It is amazing to me that the detractors cannot see the importance of this event. While they favor a cut and run policy...to never confront, to judge and act...this administration has not only engaged the enemy, but he has grabbed them by the belt buckle and forced them to fight a fight that they cannot win. We will hold on, taking our hits, but in the end we will be stanging, along wit the Iraqis, and they will be dead. And history will mark this point as the beginning of democracy in the middle east...where it was the real beginning that lead to Syria, Iran, Egypt, and all the others toppling their puny leaders and embrasing democracy.
Enjoy being on the right side of history.