Ba'athist insurgents to protect Iraq elections
Now guerrillas in the volatile Anbar province say they are prepared to protect voting stations from al-Qa'eda fighters.
Ali Mahmoud, a former army officer and rocket specialist under Saddam's Ba'ath party, said: "We want to see a nationalist government that will have a balance of interests. So our Sunni brothers will be safe when they vote."
"Sunnis should vote to make political gains. We have sent leaflets telling al-Qa'eda that they will face us if they attack voters."
Musab al-Zarqawi, the Jordanian militant who leads al-Qa'eda in Iraq, has become a particular target of Ba'athist criticism.
"Zarqawi is an American, Israeli and Iranian agent who is trying to keep our country unstable so that the Sunnis will keep facing occupation," said Abu Abdullah, a Ba'athist insurgent leader.
In the future I can imagine a completely Democratic Middle East, where people are peaceful and prosperous, in a society which is relatively open and tolerant, but respectful of Muslim values. And in such a peaceful and prosperous society, where people live in harmony with people of other religions and where a multitude of jobs (including high-tech jobs) permit a relatively wealthy population to live fruitful lives, each parlimentary session will be open and televised to the people so they can continue to participate and shape their own lives.
And every day I can invision a well-lit room where representatives from all over their respective coutries gather, following the traditions of parliments around the world, stand up and open each day of deliberation with a pro-forma invocation, prayer, and dedication.
Gracefully, a tall and proud man, who owes his country's peace and prosperity in large part to American forces, will stand up and proclaim--primarily out of the long-respected formal traditions of the past--
"Allah is great, Allah is good, and may Allah protect us from the Zionist scum and the agents of the Imperialist Powers of America."
Blaiming the United States has become tradition, not unlike San Franciso fans shouting "Beat L.A." at every gaming event--even those which do not feature a Los Angeles sports team.