Lately I have been reading a number of blogs by Iraqi natives that provide a fascinating insight into what life has been like "after the liberation." I am not one who feels that war is the ultimate solution to all the world's problems, but I cannot help but be touched at how the lives of the Iraqi people have been changed.
One of my favorite Iraqi blogs is Iraq at a Glance by a dentist in Baghdad named A.Y.S., which has just become even more fascinating now that his mother (an English teacher of 20 years) has started posting as well. For anybody even a little curious about what it's like to be a citizen of Iraq with a blog right now, this is a great starting point.
But the blog that encouraged me to write this post today is Iraq the Model. Yesterday Ali posted a response to a comment made by Democratic presidential hopeful Howard Dean about Iraq being worse off now than when Saddam was running the country. It is a powerful and eye-opening read, and defends American troops in a way that every American should be doing whether they agree with the war in Iraq or not. Here's an excerpt...
"By statements like these you deny any honourable motives for the great job your people are doing here. How in your opinion will this affect the morality of your soldiers? Feeling that their people back at home don't support them and that they're abandoned to fight alone in the battlefield."
"And all of this for what? For staying in the white house for 4 or 8 years? Is it worth it? And this is not directed only to Mr. Dean, it's for all the Americans who support such allegations without being aware of their consequences. What's it that you fight so hard for, showing your soldiers as occupiers and murderers, the soldiers who I had the honour of meeting many, and when talking to some of them, I didn't see anything other than gentleness, honesty and good will and faith in what they're doing."Ali sums it all up by saying: "My heart goes with those brave people and the widows, orphans and mothers of the American soldiers who died while doing this great service for their country, ours and humanity. I can't imagine what their response would be to such thoughtless words motivated with nothing more than selfish ambitions."
Politicians here are famous for spouting off crap that they think will get them votes or raise their popularity, despite the ramification of what their words might incite. Dean wanted to appeal himself to anti-war voters (like myself, I guess), and didn't seem to stop and think of what it might mean to our troops who are fighting and dying over in Iraq, nor the Iraqi people trying to rebuild their country. I can only hope that politicians will one day come to learn that being a leader is about more than just saying whatever it takes to be popular... and isn't it ironic that it takes somebody from Iraq, so new to freedom, to point this out?