Excellent piece...worth reading the entire thing.
What really grieves us missionaries working for Asia is to witness that what sparks debate over Iraq comes not from love for the Iraqi people, but arises simply from political interests which use the issue as a means to outvote their adversaries.
We find the same thing throughout the rest of the world, where anti-Americanism belittles all parties supporting what Bush, the United States and the marines do.
We weren’t in favor of war, but not due to blind pacifism. During the onslaught of peace protests (in reality anti-Bush and anti-Berlusconi demonstrations), we were worried about the Iraqi people.
And yet today, for the very same reason...we acknowledge that the war and Coalition forces have done good things for the country. According to a BBC survey conducted in Iraq...at least 70% of Iraqis think that things are changing for the better in their country and 56% of citizens say Iraq is better now than before the war...
A schoolteacher now earns 50 dollars a month, instead of 3 dollars prior to the war. Doctors now take home 300 dollars a month, instead of their old 4-dollar salaries.
The Church is also freer to express itself, move about, criticize and demand its rights. The return of private education –in both Christian and Muslim schools – has signified the end of tight dictatorial rule...
That fact that women and Christians entered the debate over the constitution to protect their rights and values is already a sign that the rights of both men and women will be respected, in addition to those of religion in a Muslim world.
Certainly terrorism still abounds, as soldiers and especially citizens are killed in the streets. Whoever (would) label “the resistance” those who command ranks of terrorist militants should tell their opinion to Dr. Raied Jewad, a scholar at the University of Cambridge who had his relatives murdered in a restaurant upon reentering his country after 23 years of exile.
“This isn’t resistance,” he says in a report. “To call it so is an insult to the Iraqi people. How can a populace ‘resist’ occupational forces by taking the lives of very own people and exploding bombs in streets near Mosques while killing UN and Red Cross workers?
A true form of Iraqi resistance would not have been conducted in such a pathetic and cowardly manner.”