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October 04, 2005


You know, I would acccept a "Hillary to speak after referendum", or "Biden to address Iraq in November" so as to not paint a target. But leadership is too out of touch here. 25% of the country may be anti-war but the other 75% of the country wants an alternative policy, not silence.

At the rate they're going BushCo is going to suggest they make each Sunni count for 3/5 a vote. Then they'll hail it as a great compromise sure to bind the country for all time.

Meanwhile, in other acts of great democracy, the US is consulting with Israel on what should happen after we change the regime in Syria.

The sources added that senior American officials, in recent conversations with their Israeli counterparts, have expressed interest in Israel's assessments of Assad's possible successors, asking who Israel thought could replace him and still maintain Syria's stability.

You know, the well-established principle of One-Israeli, One Syrian vote.

It is interesting that the tough and very thoughtful guys and gals at Democracy Arsenal are coming around to the view that we ought to withdraw from Iraq next year regardless of the admittedly awful consequences they foresee because we aren't going to make it better and in all probability will make it worse. And there is just no upside in that calculation.

These are the people who needed to come around. If Biden/Hillary have lost them, they no longer have any intellectual underpinning for their position. This could be very significant, and if it isn't, it just shows that the hard line Dems don't understand the landscape any better than they understand politics. Bankruptcy is not a platform one can run very far on.

speaking of politics:

Two final lead notes for today. First, the political climate in which Bush is trying to refashion his domestic agenda may be changing quickly. Polling between early September and last week suggests that the public no longer thinks hurricane relief should be nearly the priority for the federal government that they thought it should be a few weeks ago -- and that Iraq and the economy are re-emerging as top concerns they want the government to address. More on the polling data below. Unclear what this might mean for Bush, since the war and the economy (read: gas prices) remain troublesome sticking points for him. But these results don't bode well for his newly adjusted domestic agenda, which centers on rebuilding New Orleans.

my AM story was on the iraqi vote. And now:

New Rules on Iraqi Vote May Violate Standards, U.N. Says

The United Nations said today that newly adopted rules for the coming Iraqi constitutional referendum appeared to violate accepted international standards for elections.

How you came to the conclusion that the U.S. is rigging the election is beyond my capacity, but I'm slow in that conspiratorial kind of way.

Anyway, this incredibly stupid referendum was reversed by the National Assembly (the IRAQI National Assembly that is).

Iraq assembly changes mind, defuses vote rule row

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