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TomCADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-08-10 01:20 AM
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Sunnis Go to Polls, This Time, to Retain a Voice
Source: NY Times

FALLUJA, Iraq In this town, nicknamed the City of Mosques, the scratchy loudspeakers of muezzins that once preached resistance to the American occupation implored Sunni Arabs to defy bombs and vote Sunday. They did, in a landmark election that demonstrated how far Iraq has come and perhaps how far it has to go.

The droves of Sunni Arab residents casting ballots in towns like Falluja the name itself synonymous with the cradle of the insurgency, where relatively few voted in the last election five years ago promised to redraw Iraqs political landscape. The turnout delivered Sunnis their most articulated voice yet on the national stage, seven years after the American-led invasion ended their dominance.

Yet the act of their empowerment Sunday may make that landscape even more combustible, possibly even risking a revival of sectarian conflict. The demands of Sunni voters, from securing the presidency for a Sunni to diluting Irans influence, could make the already formidable task in Iraq of forming a coalition government even more difficult.

* * *
Even as many cast ballots for the slate of Ayad Allawi, a secular Shiite and former prime minister, they condemned religious Shiite parties. With the invective once reserved for Americans, voters now attacked Iran, seen here as the patron of Iraqs Shiite-led government.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/08/world/middleeast/08su...



We take it for granted now that Iraq is asserting its independence and looking forward to the departure of American troops, but not too long ago, President Obama was being attacked in 2008 for "surrendering" by pushing for a time table for withdrawal. Of course, the revisionists will now say that this was the Republican plan all along notwithstanding McCain/Palin attacking President Obama's "surrender" on this issue.

Makes you wonder where would we be if Bomb Bomb McCain was in the White House.
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TomCADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-08-10 01:32 AM
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1. LA Times (5/08) - McCain Softens His Position And Says Most Out By 2013
Edited on Mon Mar-08-10 01:33 AM by TomCADem
President Obama appears to be largely sticking to his position on Iraq, which he articulated during the campaign, but what if John McCain won? Can you imagine if he largely stuck to his positions during the campaign?

http://articles.latimes.com/2008/may/16/nation/na-iraqp...


McCain has long denounced timetables for withdrawal, but said for the first time Thursday that he would like to see most U.S. troops out of Iraq by a specific date: 2013.

Obama has emphasized his plan to withdraw all combat brigades within 16 months of taking office, but also has carefully hedged, leaving the option of taking more time -- and leaving more troops -- if events require.

* * *

But Iraq has been a foundation of McCain's appeal to conservatives, and he has remained a stalwart backer of continued U.S. involvement.

McCain previously has refused to offer anything approaching a schedule for withdrawal, and condemned former rival Mitt Romney earlier in the campaign for proposing what the Arizona senator said was a timetable.



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