Friday, August 24, 2007

Two maps that should pop the Beltway's bubble

This morning much of the mainstream media is blithering about how important it is that Republican Senator John Warner wants Bush to withdraw some 5000 US troops from Iraq to push the Iraqis to shape up. Nice of him -- what planet do these people live on?

According to Chris Bowers at Open Left:

Currently, there are only twelve congressional districts in the entire country where either a majority or a plurality of voters in that district are opposed to the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq ...

Congresscritters ignore that level of unanimity at their peril. This morning, my hometown paper headlined: "California voters souring on Democratic Congress."

California voters, disappointed that Congress has been unable to change policy in Iraq, are now giving federal lawmakers their lowest approval rating of the past decade, according to a Field Poll released today.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also is taking it on the chin. Her popularity with state voters has tumbled as Democrats and independents grow impatient with her party's inability to force the White House to start to bring home U.S. troops, the poll showed.


Meanwhile, consider this from Inside Iraq:

Patience has limits
In 1991 I witnessed the public uprising that was aroused in most Iraqi governorates by the persecuted people. At that time I was a witness when people spontaneously said, "no to the tyrant". The Iraqi people said no and they knew the consequence of this no. They knew with whom they confront, Saddam Hussein, but in spite of that they stormed to the streets yelling no … no … no. This no cost them their lives. This historical situation will remain in generations' memories for a long, long time. We will remember when the bare arms with no weapon shook at the tyrant's throne. ...

Those people who were able to say no to Saddam they will be able too to say no to new tyrants.

Yes, the government must understand that Iraqi people can't be patient forever. The day will come when Iraqi people will say no again. They can't watch daily tragedy in all of Iraq, or the sectarian fight in which governmental parties are involved and foreign influence from Saudi Arabia, Iran and Washington.

The day will come when the Iraqis will create their reality by themselves.

Jenan, who wrote this, is not some "dead-ender." The author works at great personal risk in Iraq with McClatchy News -- with a US news agency and US reporters -- to tell the story of what is happening in that unhappy country.

The map above (source) shows current conflict zones. Most of the south lacks those little flames.

But as the late great Steve Gilliard would have pointed out, this area is where in 1991 the Iraqis rose up against Saddam Hussein. If, as Jenan says, the people are once again on the verge of rising up en masse in disgust, the only line of retreat for US forces is south through those currently quiet provinces on the way to Kuwait.

The sight of that rout ought to get the attention of our sleeping rulers, don't you think?

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