Iraqi’s are discovering the cost of freedom, the difficulty of democracy, and the hard work of getting along. Reading the quotes from Iraqis in this article, I am struck by what seems to be an underlying notion that everything is the fault and responsibility of the United States. It seems that only Sardar Muhsin Maheed understands that at some point the Iraqis themselves must stand up and take control. It is a bit like a spouse in an abusive relationship. The start of real change is when the abused spouse decides to take control and change the situation.
I think Fakhri Fikry Kareem also gets it. He understands that the freedom he is living now, the freedom of speech and freedom of the press that he has made the center of his life comes at a very expensive cost. We can wish that such freedoms were free. We can demand that these freedoms be granted but these freedoms are only guaranteed to those who are willing to defend them at all cost. Freedom is not free. Freedom is guaranteed by those who are willing to take up arms and die in their defence.
Iraqis have been subjugated under despotic and tyrannical rule for as long as anyone can remember. Since the notion of freedom is new to them so also is the notion that with freedom comes the responsibility of one’s own future. However, the future of Iraq depends on Iraqis stepping forward and taking charge of their destiny. Freedom is not free. Coalition forces made the initial purchase of freedom for Iraqis. Iraqis themselves must now step up and take over the maintenance of that freedom.
[posted with ecto]