Thursday, January 15, 2004


Very good piece by Thomas Friedman here. Go read it all.
This may be apocryphal, but Saddam is supposed to have once remarked something like: Be careful, if you get rid of me, you will need seven presidents to rule Iraq...

If Iraq is going to be made to work as a decent, pluralistic, self-governing entity, noted the Iraq expert Amatzia Baram of the United States Institute of Peace, all the key factions there will have to accept being "reasonably unhappy." All will have to settle for their second-best dream in order to avoid their first-class nightmare: chaos or a return to tyranny...

In short, our most serious long-term enemy in Iraq may not be the Iraqi insurgents, but the Iraqi people. Can they live together reasonably unhappy at first, and then grow reasonably happy? If they can, we will be Iraq's temporary midwife, helping give birth to its democracy. If they can't, we will be Iraq's new, always unhappy, baby sitter, and the old one, Saddam Hussein, will be laughing at us all the way to the gallows.

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