Our troops are getting killed to perpetuate a situation that Iraqis don't want and believe is causing more of them to be killed? Stay the course? Bah! Humbug!
A strong majority of Iraqis want U.S.-led military forces to immediately withdraw from the country, saying their swift departure would make Iraq more secure and decrease sectarian violence, according to new polls by the State Department and independent researchers.
In Baghdad, for example, nearly three-quarters of residents polled said they would feel safer if U.S. and other foreign forces left Iraq, with 65 percent of those asked favoring an immediate pullout...
"Majorities in all regions except Kurdish areas state that the Multi-National Force-Iraq (MNF-I) should withdraw immediately, adding that the MNF-I's departure would make them feel safer and decrease violence," concludes the 20-page State Department report, titled "Iraq Civil War Fears Remain High in Sunni and Mixed Areas."
By large margins, though, Iraqis believed that the U.S. government would refuse the request, with 77 percent of those polled saying the United States intends keep permanent military bases in the country...
"The very fact that there is such a low support for American forces has to do with the American failure to do basically anything for Iraqis," said Mansoor Moaddel, a professor of sociology at Eastern Michigan University, who commissioned a poll earlier this year that also found widespread support for a withdrawal. "It's part of human nature. People respect authority and power. But the U.S. so far has been unable to establish any real authority."
Interviews with two dozen Baghdad residents in recent weeks suggest one central cause for Iraqi distrust of the Americans: They believe the U.S. government has deliberately thrown the country into chaos.
The most common theory heard on the streets of Baghdad is that the American military is creating a civil war to create an excuse to keep its forces here.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
A Washington Post article by Amit R. Paley reports on two new polls.