Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Have An Election, Not a Cow

Helena Cobban thinks Ayatollah Sistani may be trying to communicate with the Sunni leadership through the media. But why can't they communicate directly? He can, "but to reach a broad array of Sunnis, inside and outside the country, using al-Hayat would be a sensible choice." Sensible because even Sunni expatriates appear ready to rock the vote.

Sistani is applying pressure on all fronts. (What does this mean? The guy must believe that US troops are leaving REALLY soon, and there's a huge risk in not holding elections RIGHT NOW.) Reading this post, we learn that some of Sistani's underlings are saying that non-voters will go to hell. (!) Sadly, Sistani himself is a bit less fun, though he can certainly talk the democracy talk: "The representation of our Sunni brethren in the coming government must be effective, regardless of the results of the elections." (Exactly -- process over results. Just don't try to make the same point if you're Barbara Boxer.) But can Sistani -- WILL Sistani -- walk the walk?)

Plus a refurbished blog by an Iraqi expatriate, in English for the first time.