Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Finally, some interesting poll numbers 

The title should be a dead giveaway – this post has nothing to do with Venezuela. The polling numbers out of Venezuela – Chavez leads by 15 points, no Chavez leads by 20 points, no Chavez leads by 30 points; Chavez’s approval rating is 60%, no Chavez’s approval rating is 70%... – have been a bore for quite some time now.

No the interesting poll numbers come from Iraq. And boy do they blow a lot of ChickenHawk propaganda out of the water. So lets dive right into the article:

Poll: Iraqis back attacks on U.S. troops

About six in 10 Iraqis say they approve of attacks on U.S.-led forces, and slightly more than that want their government to ask U.S. troops to leave within a year, a poll finds.
The Iraqis also have negative views of Osama bin Laden, according to the early September poll of 1,150.
The poll, done for University of Maryland's Program on International Policy Attitudes, found:
_Almost four in five Iraqis say the U.S. military force in Iraq provokes more violence than it prevents.
_About 61 percent approved of the attacks — up from 47 percent in January. A solid majority of Shiite and Sunni Arabs approved of the attacks, according to the poll. The increase came mostly among Shiite Iraqis.
_An overwhelmingly negative opinion of terror chief bin Laden and more than half, 57 percent, disapproving of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
_Three-fourths say they think the U.S. plans to keep military bases in Iraq permanently.
_A majority of Iraqis, 72 percent, say they think Iraq will be one state five years from now. Shiite Iraqis were most likely to feel that way, though a majority of Sunnis and Kurds also believed that would be the case.
The PIPA poll, which included an oversample of 150 Sunni Iraqis, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
The State Department, meanwhile, has conducted its own poll, something it does periodically, spokesman Sean McCormack said. The State Department poll found two-thirds of Iraqis in Baghdad favor an immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces, according to The Washington Post. McCormack declined to discuss details of the department's poll.
"What I hear from government representatives and other anecdotal evidence that you hear from Iraqis that is collected by embassy personnel and military personnel is that Iraqis do appreciate our presence there," he said. "They do understand the reasons for it, they do understand that we don't want to or we don't intend to be there indefinitely."
An Iraqi public opinion research firm with a proven record of conducting scientifically valid surveys conducted the department's poll, press officer Janelle Hironimus said later.
"We will not identify the firm in order to protect it and its employees from danger," she said.
Iraqi officials have said Iraq's security was improving and expanding throughout the country, and most U.S. troops might be able to leave eventually.
Last week, Iraqi President Jalal Talibani told the United Nations that coalition forces should remain in Iraq until Iraqi security forces are "capable of putting an end to terrorism and maintaining stability and security."

Wow, there is a lot there so lets digest this bit by bit.

First, 6 out of 10 Iraqis approve of attacks against U.S. troops. So there, in a sentence, you go - most Iraqis approve of U.S. troops being blown up and want whoever is blowing them up to keep doing it. It furthers states they want the U.S. out of their country within a year. So what does this mean? Just for starters it obviously means this:

1) The U.S. occupation is unpopular with AVERAGE Iraqis
2) Rather than being acts of terrorism carried out by a few the attacks against the U.S. are part of a broadly backed war of national liberation to get an occupying power out.
3) The U.S. references to the Iraqi insurgents as “terrorists”, “dead-enders”, “Ba-athists”, “foreign jijadis” and the like are all lies. THE IRAQI INSUGENCY IS THE IRAQI PEOPLE

The vast majority of Iraqis oppose Bin-laden and oppose the Iranian leadership. So again, the U.S. is not fighting Al-Qaeda, it is not even fighting Al-Qaeda sympathizers, nor is it fighting Iranian puppets. This again confirms point number three above – or stated another way, the war the U.S. is fighting in Iraq is a war against the Iraqi people, full stop.

A majority of both Sunnis AND Shiites approve of the attacks against the U.S. troops. So there goes the lie that “80% of the Iraqi population, the Shiites and the Kurds, support us, it is only the recalcitrant Sunnis upset at losing their privileges that are fighting” Bullshit, Iraqis AS A PEOPLE are fighting the U.S.

Three fourths of Iraqis think that the U.S. intends to remain permanently in their country. I wonder what they are basing that opinion on ? – hopefully not some thing flimsy like the fact that the U.S. is building permanent military bases in Iraq and the U.S. leadership has openly stated it intends to house its permanent military presence in the Middle East in Iraq instead of Saudi Arabia. Really, if Iraqis form their opinions based on things like that then they are, just silly people!

And here is the kicker, a secret State Department poll apparently found that two thirds of Baghdad residents want the U.S. to leave immediately. Hmm, I wonder what the deciding fact in that is? – the 3,000 murders a month in that city, the fact that they only get about 5 hours of electricity a day, the lack of drinking water, interminable lines for gasoline ….. It would be kind of interesting to know what other nice little tidbits there are in those polls that compel them to keep them under wraps.

In any event, the posture of this blog as to the nature of the regime in Iraq has been vindicated. I have always maintained it is an illegitimate puppet regime foisted on the Iraqi people by the U.S. military. Almost certainly the “elections” there have been sham elections meant strictly for international consumption and have nothing to do with the true desires of the Iraqi people.

In fact it is quiet telling what this poll DIDN’T ask – minor things like “do you support the current Iraqi government?”, “do you think the Iraqi government is a legitimate government?”, “do you think the Iraqi government represents the Iraqi people?”, “do you think the elections of the last two years were real elections with results that accurately reflect the will of the Iraqi population?”

I’m sure the answers to those questions would be quite interesting. Of course, I’m also sure that any polling firm that intended to ask any such questions would be immediately thrown out of the country.

In any event, the mask is off this charade. It is high time activists, journalists, and others of good faith stop letting the debate on this war be limited by all the false formulations of the pro-war propagandists. The war has zero to do with Bin-Laden, terrorism, WMD, or “we fight them their or we fight them here”. It has everything to do with a proud people who want to have control over their own country and want to be able to deal with their own problems in their own ways.

I am confident that the Iraqi people will ultimately get control over their own country and lives. But it would be nice if that happened sooner rather than later and with fewer deaths rather than more. And it would be nice if the American people were to realize that the sooner they pull the plug on this debacle the better for them too.


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?