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news & opinion with no titillating non-news from the major non-news channels.


I am: progressive, not a wild-eyed Progressive; liberal, but shun liberals and Liberals; conservative, but some Conservatives worry me; absolutely NOT a libertarian. I am: an idealist, but no utopian; a pragmatist, but no Machiavellian. I am a realist who dreams.


I welcome all opinions.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

How True Democracy Works:
   Rubin warns Arabs of the reality
  of Iraqi Democracy

Michael Rubin writes of democracy and accountability in the Middle East on the pages of the Wall Street Journal's OpinionJournal. In Iraqi Beacon, Message to the Arab world: Democracy works, (registration may be required) Rubin exhorts and warns the Iraqi people, and the Middle East in general, Here's your chance. Make it a good one.

Iraqis will go to the polls tomorrow for the third time this year. Their actions mark both a triumph for the Iraqi people and a warning for Arab autocrats. Not only has the Iraqi march toward democracy proved naysayers wrong, but Iraqis' growing embrace of democracy demonstrates the wisdom of staying the course. Iraqis are changing political culture. Howard Dean and John Murtha may believe that the U.S. military has lost. Brent Scowcroft may think Arab democracy a pipe dream. They are mistaken.

The greatest impediment to progress in the Arab world is not terrorism or Islamism; both are recent phenomena. Rather, it is lack of accountability. Instead of accepting responsibility for lack of progress, many Arab regimes blame outsiders.
The process of democratization may be messy--but it is working. Iraqis are frustrated with their situation but, unlike elsewhere in the Arab world, they can now hold their government to account. In Brent Scowcroft's world of realpolitik, Arab regimes are unaccountable to their people. There are no constituents.

Ready or not, here it comes.


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