what’s gone right in Iraq? This much is obvious: Saddam Hussien and his psychopathic crime gang, are out. He was a time bomb that threatened the entire region and indeed the international community. He had to be defused, and should have been deposed already in the first Persian Gulf war. Thanks to the United States and its allies that Saddam, “the butcher of Baghdad” is today no longer among us.
Nor is this all—much more good news is coming out of Iraq. But, unfortunately, in our post-modern media culture, good news is no news while bad news sells: “If it bleeds, it leads”. To be sure, when a gigantic generator comes on line in Baghdad, when new industries, factories, hotels, and shops are coming on line, when schools, hospitals and health services are being renovated, and when major investment is being undertaken to improve water and sanitation standards, there are no mentions of them in any major news media, nonetheless they are important events for the Iraqis.
According to the New York Time’s astonishing report, thanks to the high increase in oil prices, and to new discoveries of oil reserves since Saddam‘s good-bye, Iraq’s budget surplus will amount as much as $79 billion by the of this year. Still more encouraging is the fact: Iraq’s vast national resources are back in the hands of Iraqi people and are no longer monopolized by Saddam ’s nightmarish crime family, and no more any chunk of it can be confiscated by UN and co through “oil for food program.” The magnitude of the fraud associated with this program remains unmatched in human history until today.
Often overlooked is the Kurdish region of Iraq, which has undergone a peaceful, democratic transformation, setting an example in democracy building for the entire Middle East. Kurdistan operates as a virtually self-sustaining democratic and economically functional state governed by the rule of law, including an elected parliament, independent judiciary, education system, and free media, as well as being supportive of women’s rights/education and minority rights.
Another important success story for Iraqis is the crackdown on the Mahdi Army, led by the rebel Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who refused to play by nonviolent, peaceful rules of the democratic game and wanted to shoot his way into power. The Sunni insurgents-cum-terrorists are neither an essentially large problem today. They are defeated. The level of violence has dramatically plummeted in Anbar province, home of the Sunni insurgency. And from Mosul in the north to Basra in the south, insurgent violence in Iraq continues to decrease as an alliance of US troops, Iraqi army, and local tribes moving against the al-Qaeda foreign fighters. They are beaten to that extent we can declare: “Mission accomplished.”
Iraq’s new army is no longer deployed to invade Iran and Kuwait and to carry out genocide against Kurds and Shiites, but only to put in good use: defeating al-Qaida and the Mahdi Army. A just war.
In any case, one particular paranoiac fantasy should be discounted: that terrorists, by suicide bombings, are going to defeat the United States and liberated Iraq. No, the terrorists cannot win in a very vital country with direct access to the world’s energy reserves. I am even prepared to say that Iraq will be the first building block of a new democratic Middle East.