Friday, February 04, 2005

America's Gift to .... Iran ?

Just read this in-depth article in NYTimes.com (Shiite Alliance Adds to Lead as More Votes Are Counted in Iraq) about the early returns from January elections in Iraq. They show an overwhelming support for Shiite religious grouping blessed by Ayatollah Shistani.

Since most of the voters were either Shiites, its now clear that they voted only because of direct orders from their religious leader and not for the love of democracy. This has again proved the sway hold by the Grand Ayatollah over Iraqis. He has consistently forced the hands of the American military in Iraq. This was evident when he cut a deal with Al Sadr in Najaf and when he forced the Americans to hold early elections.

The G. A. Shistani was born in Iran and is considered close to the Iranian leadership, because of their common religion. He is also variously described by the American media to be democratic and not like the Iranians. But also with the caveat that he is reclusive and nobody really knows what he is thinking....

This is looking more and more like not just failure of planning on part of the Bush Administration, but also a pathetic level of understanding of middle-east realities and alliances on part of the neo-cons who promoted U.S. interference in Inaq.

It will be funny to watch Rice and Bush explain (!) and spin the Iraq story in a year or two, when Iraq implicitly or explicitly declares itself an Islamic Republic with close ties to Iran and in the process becomes more violent and unstable. Yet another source for terror and grief for the world....

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