Friday, January 07, 2005

Iraq election update

From Kevin Drum at the Washington Monthly:
Baghdad is one of the four provinces identified by the commander, Lt. Gen. Thomas Metz as having insecure areas....The other provinces, the general said, were Anbar, which includes Falluja and Ramadi; Nineveh, which contains Mosul; and Salahadin, which includes Tikrit, the hometown of Saddam Hussein.

So: the four provinces containing the cities of Baghdad, Fallujah, Mosul, and Tikrit. That's sort of like an American election in which California, New York, Illinois, and Ohio couldn't vote. In fact, it's worse: those four provinces contain about 50% of Iraq's population.
I mainly point this out because, while I pay little attention to network news, I do pick up on some things. One of the points that I've noticed is that whenever there is some disagreement as to whether Iraq will be able to hold elections, the line comes out that "only 4 of the 18 provinces are unstable and could have difficulties". Of course, this is grossly ingenuous, because those provinces are quite heavily populated, but the "4 of 18" number sounds like the situation is under control.

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