Monday, April 17, 2006

Good News From Iraq here. Because I know you didn't read it in the New York Times.


The Thoughtful American said...

This is the best news on Iraq that the NRO can come up with? Contrary to his first assertion, the Iraqi PM just stated that he was refusing to resign, and a few gungho quotes by officers quoting the party line is insufficient to become optimistic. And 2.6% growth, when we are dumping billions of dollars in a poor economy, is pathetic.

SirWhoopass said...

That is an interesting point about GDP. The State Department report (linked from the NRO article) claims, "Iraq's economy grew from $18.9 billion in 2002 to $33.1 billion in 2005." This is in comparison to $18.4 billion spent on reconstruction.

Oil accounts for two-thirds of the Iraqi GDP. Production in 2004 was below Saddam-era production, and it continues to fall.

Orrin Johnson said...

The point is not that Iraq is full-up-round, but that there are a lot of improvements going on. And that was a one week snapshot, not a comprehensive list. Most of the soldiers taking part in the reconstruction are reporting success and significant progress. Are they all just knuckle dragging idiots toeing the party line? Ridiculous.

NPR reported just this morning that the Iraqi PM is now willing to abide by the Shi'ite council's re-deliberation decision - a hopeful sign. I remember the same nay-saying voices before each and every Iraqi election and before the final form of the Constitution was finalized. How many times do the Iraqis need to bravely practice democracy before we give them a little credit? No one thought the US was a failed state when Congressional deadlock shut down the government in the 90s, or that our democratic experiment had somehow "failed".

Iraqi politicians risk their lives merely by their participation in this process. It defies all logic and reason to think they will now suddenly throw away their progress obtained in the face of that risk.

I'll take the word of "a few gungho quotes by officers" who HAPPEN TO BE THERE than anti-Bush American newspapermen, Clinton's Generals with books to sell, or even the journalists who refuse to leave the Green Zone.

After WWII, we spent fully 3% of our GDP on the Marshall plan. I think that investment was worth it. We are spending far, far less than that now, and likewise, I am convinced it will be money extremely well spent. There is growth and opportunity now where there could be none before. The trends are in the right direction. One thing can stop that, and that's us leaving. Such a betrayal would be unimaginable.

Orrin Johnson said...

Here is the latest political news from Iraq.

It is glorious to me to read about political manuevering in Iraq - the very heart of the Middle East. Imagine how unthinkable this story would have been just 5 years ago. Imagine how inspiring this must be to hopeful future democrats region-wide. This is worth fighting for, nurturing, and supporting.