Already the backward governments of the middle east are seeing the writing on the wall. President Bush has said that a free and democratic Iraq would be the beginning of change in the middle east. It’s beginning even now. Voter turnout was high. That blue ink on the finger thing. I don’t know whose idea that was but it was brilliant. Everyone who voted is tagged. There is an endless stream of photographs of Iraqis around the world holding up their blue stained finger. Iraqis voting for Iraq. Yeah.
And the Iraqi military, National Guard rather, they are to be proud of themselves. They did well.
The people of the neighboring countries are watching Iraq. They are watching, have been watching as Iraqis walk the long and painful road to freedom and self-governance. If everyone involved stays the course, Sunday will go down in history as the dawn of a new day in Iraq and the middle east. The people in neighboring countries are watching. Those who live in fear and under oppression will get a whiff of the sweet aroma of freedom.
As for US presence in Iraq, I think we should stay until we are relieved. I believe that there will come a day when a freely elected Iraqi government will tell the Coalition Forces, thank you very much for your help. We have the watch, you stand relieved. And then it will be time for us to pack our gear and go. I still hope to see a day when I can serve along side Iraqi soldiers in a multi-national force helping to free other people from the oppression of their government. For now, it is the Iraqi’s moment to celebrate. They have walked a long and painful road. At last they have the glimpse of what that long and gruesome walk was all about.