Thursday, April 29, 2004

Losing support in Iraq 

There was a very interesting poll of Iraqis carried out by CNN and USA Today most Iraqis said they want the U.S. to leave immediately. While a majority of Iraqis are glad the U.S. overthrew Saddam Hussien only a third of Iraqis believe the U.S. occupation is doing more harm than good. Further 58% of Iraqis thought the U.S. troops were very hostile and acted inappropriately towards Iraqis. Meanwhile only 11% believe the U.S. is working hard to restore services such as electric power.

However the most damming statistic coming out of the poll is this: a full 71% of Iraqis now view the U.S. as occupiers of Iraq rather than libertators. While this is not enexpected it does spell doom for the U.S. in Iraq.

There were some interesting quotes from the USA Today article on this poll:

"I'm not ungrateful that they took away Saddam Hussein," says Salam Ahmed, 30, a Shiite businessman. "But the job is done. Thank you very much. See you later. Bye-bye."


"I would shoot at the Americans right now if I had the chance," says Abbas Kadhum Muia, 24, who owns a bicycle shop in Sadr City, a Shiite slum of 2 million people in Baghdad that was strongly anti-Saddam and once friendly to the Americans. "At the beginning ... there were no problems, but gradually they started to show disrespect (and) encroach on our rights, arresting people."


Jalal Abbas, 20, a student in Baghdad, says it's widely believed "that when soldiers search houses, they steal gold and money. And in our houses, people are taking special (precautions) to hide their money and gold for fear of them being stolen by U.S. soldiers."


Najem Aboud Debib, 37, like many Shiites, says he feels deep disappointment now. The Shiites opposed Saddam, whose regime was dominated by Sunnis. A year ago, they welcomed the Americans and the freedom to exercise their brand of Islam without repression. Now, Aboud Debib says, "I'm sure they have no morals. ...They are something like Saddam Hussein. We are suffering under the same situation."


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