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In policy reversal, US signals possible acceptance of theocracy in Iraq
May 16, 2004 8:29 AM   Subscribe

In policy reversal, US signals possible acceptance of theocracy in Iraq Bringing democracy to the area...Ladies: do we have some surprises in store for you. Is Iran to be the model? "The United States signaled its readiness to put up with an Islamic theocracy in future sovereign Iraq, with Secretary of State Colin Powell saying the US administration "will have to accept" any government created as a result of free and fair elections there. ..."
posted by Postroad (25 comments total)

 
Oh, look on the bright side: nothing Colin Powell says can be viewed as official U.S. policy anyway.
posted by stonerose at 8:32 AM on May 16, 2004


Oh, SNAP!
posted by keswick at 8:36 AM on May 16, 2004


Maybe he's willing to say that now because all the municipal elections held so far have shown the Iraqis to be smart enough to not elect religious knuckleheads.
posted by techgnollogic at 8:40 AM on May 16, 2004


Have any local elections actually been held in places where 'religious knuckleheads' have a chance of being elected? I thought the U.S. had delayed elections in those areas due to...ahem...security concerns.
posted by stonerose at 8:43 AM on May 16, 2004


Let's see, there are Shiites in the south, increasingly radical Sunnis in the middle, and more secular Sunnis up north. Yeah, I'm sure that plan's going to work...
posted by clevershark at 9:25 AM on May 16, 2004


To be fair, it would be hypocritical for the Bush administration to reject theocratic rule in Iraq while working so hard to promote theocratic rule in America.
posted by SPrintF at 9:26 AM on May 16, 2004


Actually, women have much more intellectual, economic, and legal freedom in Iran than they do in, say, our "friend" Saudi Arabia.

Since the policy of the US government is clearly that Saudi can do no wrong, why be surprised if we push Iraq in that direction?
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:35 AM on May 16, 2004


Well, what with Bush and Kerry tied neck-and-neck in the polls, I guess the only political solution lies with Ron Jeremy!

Right.

Didn't a recent poll in Iraq show that theocracy was about as popular as root canal? Isn't it obvious that Powell is lighting a fire under some haggler, the threat of theocracy, to get him or them to quit futzing about and help make a real government?

Even the Iraqi Shiites know that any Iraqi Shiite theocracy would just be a subsidiary of Iran, and even they gag at the prospect.
posted by kablam at 9:42 AM on May 16, 2004


I can't believe that they are actually going to let the Iraqi's choose their own government. That isn't Freedom ™
posted by srboisvert at 9:48 AM on May 16, 2004


Ah, good-cop Colin rides into town to sweep up the remains of the day - and, as he stanches the bleeding from the scattered legs, arms and torsos with artful applications of sawdust, taco-sauce and and MSG powder and binds them all together with Saran-Wrap (bought on credit at the government store for a minor 751% markup over domestic retail and paid for by the sale of Hamburger Helper made from reprocessed inner city orphan crack babies), he will reanimate his simulacrum of democracy, arms legs and heads stitched up random and akimbo, with Miracle Gro and an ecumenical prayer from his copy of "A Fighting Man's Field Guide to World Religions, Strange Sects, Curious Cults, and Potentially Satanic Manifestations."

When, amidst the lightning strike and the sulfurous puff of smoke, the thing finally opens it's eyes.......he'll hop on his trusty steed and haul ass out of there.
posted by troutfishing at 9:58 AM on May 16, 2004


Is it just me or Powell and Bush are no longer reading the same statements ?

Powell: We'll leave if Iraq govt will ask (but we don't think they will) ...a good bailout strategy one would think.

Bush: "Our forces will remain in Iraq to assist the Iraqi people until Iraqis can secure their own country" Where's Powell's bailout strategy ?
posted by elpapacito at 10:15 AM on May 16, 2004


Ah, good-cop Colin


I was just going to write that, I swear!
this increasingly telepathic MeFio thing between trout and me is begging to spook me.
posted by matteo at 10:27 AM on May 16, 2004



"is begging" --- is beginning.
my bad

posted by matteo at 10:28 AM on May 16, 2004


This isn't a policy shift. This is Powell saying what you're supposed to say. If in a free and fair election some "religious knucklehead" wins, that was the decision of the people. The US elected a religious knucklehead in 2000 and have to live with it.

Of course, the US would never allow a religious knucklehead to in Iraq [unless he's a freedom loving democratic one]. The Iraqis are going to learn to love freedom and democracy if we have to kill every last one of them.
posted by birdherder at 11:02 AM on May 16, 2004


It seems like goal of this administration has been to make a Christian Theocracy here, so I really don't see how they can quibble about an Islamic theocracy there.

The US elected a religious knucklehead in 2000 and have to live with it.

Well, some of us would argue with that. But now, we just sigh, and mumble it under our breath.
posted by benjh at 1:21 PM on May 16, 2004


matteo - maybe we think along similar lines that converge even more due to the fact that we read a lot of the same material and commentary? And were you also thinking of "Hamburger Helper made from reprocessed inner city orphan crack babies" as well ? Please don't tell me it's true.
posted by troutfishing at 1:58 PM on May 16, 2004


no.

really, no.

*goes vegetarian*
posted by matteo at 2:09 PM on May 16, 2004


were you also thinking of "Hamburger Helper made from reprocessed inner city orphan crack babies" as well ?

I was.


That's some go-o-od eatin'.
posted by languagehat at 3:17 PM on May 16, 2004


matteo - look out! - I hear those vegetarians aren't so good in bed.

languagehat - It's a lot better than Soylent Green, believe me.
posted by troutfishing at 3:45 PM on May 16, 2004


Is Iran to be the model?

Iran: The Mideast's Model Economy?
Iran: No Longer A No-Woman's Land
posted by kliuless at 4:05 PM on May 16, 2004


Since the policy of the US government is clearly that Saudi can do no wrong

Speaking of which: Bush's Uncle Is Executive At Bank Fined for Lax Oversight of Saudi Money
posted by homunculus at 4:13 PM on May 16, 2004


homunculus - since I've helped in driving this thread far afield....

Holy crap! That a mouthfull and a half. ; o
posted by troutfishing at 4:54 PM on May 16, 2004


Well, one of the things that Conservative American governments have never quite grasped about democracy is that democracy means that other countries might make decisions that we disagree with. This seems to happen repeatedly over history from Latin American land reform, to West Germany's feeble attempts at nuclear disarmament in the 80s, to France not supporting the invasion of Iraq.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 10:24 PM on May 16, 2004


Poor Colin is so out of the loop that I doubt he knows anything about what the current regime would or would not allow. Why he hasn't resigned baffles me...they must have blackmail evidence that is just extraordinary.

That said, I'm sure the Bush administration would welcome another regime that wants to keep women under control, barefoot, pregnant and silent. After all, it's what they want here.

The US elected a religious knucklehead in 2000 and have to live with it.

No...no we didn't. He was appointed by his friends on the Supreme Court...he was not elected.

It seems like goal of this administration has been to make a Christian Theocracy here...

Preach on, brother man...preach on...
posted by dejah420 at 9:31 AM on May 17, 2004


Since the policy of the US government is clearly that Saudi can do no wrong, why be surprised if we push Iraq in that direction?
Don't forget we are leaving Saudi, as we comment, the USAF is packing up. The packing up will take a year though.
posted by thomcatspike at 10:09 AM on May 17, 2004


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