Friday, December 16, 2005

ELECTION? WHAT ELECTION?

Whilst those of us keen on the establishment of a stable democracy in Iraq have been busy devouring news of yesterday's elections from both the traditional media and on-the-ground blogs, this historic event appears not to have filtered through to the Left-hand side of the Blogosphere. Jeff Goldstein of Protein Wisdom fame has a round-up of yesterday's headlines from some of the most popular anti-war blogs who between them just about managed a collective yawn before moving back into familiar territory.

Some examples:
Daily Kos: “Mr. Bush, Your Coalition Is Shrinking” (Italy to draw down troops); “Open Thread”; “Is There Any Doubt ScAlito Is An Extremist?”

Atrios: “ More Fun with Jack and Tom” (Abramoff); “What Millions Let You Do” (ad buys on Drudge); “Open Thread”; “The Dean” (on David Broder)

The Huffington Post: "Iraqis Vote Under Tight Security" [front page; blog entries follw] ; “Care for the Least of These” (Republicans don’t care about the poor); “I Won’t Stand For It” (shame at standing for the singing of the National Anthem); “The Sustainability of ‘Alternative Gifts’” (avoiding “conspicuous consumption"); “‘60s Flashback: Is the Government Spying on Us Again?” (on yesterday’s MSNBC report)
As Jeff dryly puts it:
I’m not passing judgment on these sites; I’m just trying to give you some idea about how the anti-war sites are reacting to the elections. Perhaps some sites are waiting for results. Or a really nasty explosion or something. You can draw your own conclusions.
Quite. I wonder how many are suffering from YAB-Think, that special kind of feeling anti-war campaigners get when they read about another terrorist attack in Iraq. In Yasmin Alibhai-Brown's own words (with a hat-tip to Norm Geras):
A dogged campaigner against the blighted war in Iraq, I am now wrestling with the demons of callous triumphalism. The anti-war protestors have been proved horribly right. The allies who marched with the US into this ugly adventure should feel mortified. It is a fearful and turbulent country the new Western Imperialists hand over to the Iraqis. The past months have been challenging for us in the anti-war camp. I am ashamed to admit that there have been times when I wanted more chaos, more shocks, more disorder to teach our side a lesson. On Monday I found myself again hoping that this handover proves a failure because it has been orchestrated by the Americans. The decent people of Iraq need optimism now, not my distasteful ill-wishes for the only hope they have for a future.
Nice. Willing the insurgency to kill more innocent Iraqis to "teach our side a lesson" and all because the liberation of Iraq has been "orchestrated by the Americans" - a view shared by a few too many in the Stoppers camp I'd say. (Besides, who else does YAB think was likely to sort Iraq out? Russia? China? France? Kofi Annan on a rainbow-coloured pony bringing nothing but Peace and Love?)

Going back to the attitude of the main anti-war blogs, haven't we been here before? Ah yes, just after Katrina. When those on Blogland's Right-hand side were manically organising relief efforts for those caught up in the flooding, the Left was busy blaming Bush... How very constructive.

Surely it's time for the MoveOn.org brigade to practise what they preach and MOVE ON. Our troops aren't going anywhere until Iraq's security forces are in a position to keep the country secure and the insurgents at bay. Get over it. Or are ten million Iraqis voting in a free election not cause for celebration?


UPDATE

It's not just the blogging Left who are showing a complete lack of interest in the Iraqi elections. Scott Burgess notices the Independent chose to run a full front-page story on badger culling rather than report on the millions of purple fingers...

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