I read a lot of Iraqi blogs and journalism. The reason? I don’t believe anything Western journalists have to say any more. If the New York Times printed a headline saying “Sun Slated to Rise Tomorrow Morning”, I’d fact check them with one of my astronomer friends – just to be sure our planet hadn’t recently stopped rotating.
Many Iraqis have made it clear the US isn’t brutal enough in rooting out the old regime. I’m not sure it is always understood over there that we simply cannot act as violently as they would wish. Now that the enemy is dug in behind a screen of civilians we face fairly stiff limits of ‘acceptable behavior’. We are constantly under the scrutiny of the western allies of the deposed butcher. We face terrorist embedded Paris Match ‘reporters’ filming the firing of anti-aircraft missiles at civilian aircraft. We have Reuters reporters digging for any concievable anti-american angle they can find.
The Iraqis themselves have no such constraints. I agree with Alaa in principle. We have to push the control of security into Iraqi hands as fast as we possibly can… but we do have to balance this with progress in the creation of a civil society. That is the gift we wish to leave behind us. It will have far more lasting effects than the burial of Saddam’s spawn.
The day will come when Iraqi police and government take over everything… and very soon afterwards a large number of Baathists will turn up dead.