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So it's Operation: Iraqi Freedom.

  1. Apr 2, 2003 #1
    We're fighting to free the people and set up a democracy, right?

    So if we did that, and the people voted for...

    Saddam Hussein...

    would we respect the will of the voting public? Our beloved leader respects the will of the public, right?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 2, 2003 #2

    russ_watters

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    Thats a pretty big if, Chemical. IMO, big enough to make the question unanswerable. Mickey Mouse often gets a significant number of votes in the US (so I have heard). What would we do if he were elected?
     
  4. Apr 2, 2003 #3
    ^^^ Party like it's 1999!

    I keep writing in Hank the Angry Dwarf for President, but somehow he never wins.
     
  5. Apr 2, 2003 #4
    I'll be voting for Ali G, from Da Ali G Show.

    Just finished watching it and couldn't stop LMAO.
     
  6. Apr 2, 2003 #5
    Hey, I thought only Aussies saw that show! I am proud to share a name with Ali G. :smile: It almost makes up for Chemical Ali.
     
  7. Apr 2, 2003 #6
    This is only the second time I've seen it, but I'll keep watching. Very, very funny.
     
  8. Apr 3, 2003 #7

    FZ+

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    But Chemicalsuperfreak's question does raise an interesting uqestion. How free can a government set up by an invading power really be? I fear that the Iraqis would be free not because the US allows their self determination, but that their desires coincide with that of the US. If they do vote in someone like Saddam (and note for example, that the two proposed new Iraqi leaders are both ex-Saddam generals, who were responsible for many of those atrocities, and that the Kurdish opposition also has a history of harbouring terrorists and their own abuses) I doubt the US would be very helpful. Indeed, not just that. The US claims to hold the "integrity" of Iraq as supremely important. But what if that eventually conflicts with the opinion of the Iraqi people. In blunt terms, what if the Kurdish go for an independent state, against US promises to Turkey?
    But these are not directly problems at this time. But they'd better be sorted, and soon...
     
  9. Apr 3, 2003 #8
    I think, like Russ said, they wouldn't re-elect him. Even if they wanted to we certainly wouldn't let them have Saddam, or any members of his regime back. I don't think it's worth going into the latter, questioning (again) that one of the main purposes of this war was to free the Iraqi people, because there's practically 0 chance that Saddam could get voted back in, even if he were a candidate.
     
  10. Apr 3, 2003 #9
    at one point saddam hussein made it a crime punishable by execution to be associated with/in a political party that wasn't his own, how could he ever be 'voted' in? there's also something about an international criminal not technically being able to run in a democratic election, so i don't think we will have this problem.
     
  11. Apr 3, 2003 #10

    Njorl

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    There is modern precedent for military dictatorships with strong ethnic rebel groups in opposition being capable of forming democracies. In central America, most countries made the transition and most had strong rebel groups of indigenous population.

    For Iraq, the biggest problem is their biggest asset - oil. If it is kept nationalized, it becomes a huge prize for whoever controls the national government. It could be such a source of cronyism that it could cause civil war. If the Shiites, who comprise 65% of the population control government and decide that every worker at every drill and on every pipeline must be a Shiite, that would cause trouble. If it is privatized, it could be a tremendous source of corruption. A few wealthy and connected businessmen could use current wealth to aquire the majority of the national assets. They would then be in a position to unduly affect even a democratically elected government.

    It will be a very tricky business.

    Njorl
     
  12. Apr 3, 2003 #11
    Nope, the whole point of the invasiion is to set up a pro-American government, will of the people be damned.
     
  13. Apr 3, 2003 #12

    russ_watters

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    FZ, you wouldn't argue that Germany doesn't have a democratic government, would you? It was very shortly (less than a year I think) after WWII, that the 3 allied zones unified and control was released back to the German people.
    Well therein lies the catch-22. Saddam won't be eligible to be on the ballot so it doesn't even matter if people write him in. There is nothing wrong with that. Again, Mickey Mouse is not eligible to be president of the US, no matter how many people vote for him.
    Exactly my point, Mulder. It really is a pointless question.
    Again its a catch-22, Zero (maybe an inverse catch-22). We're going to set up a democracy and since its a democracy it will be pro-America (at least more pro-america than a criminal dictatorship). Now lets be clear - it is certainly a matter of American self-interest for Iraq to have a pro-america government (duh). But it also benefits Iraq. So its win-win for the US. If we do it correctly, it ends up like Germany after WWII - we can claim an amazinly altruistic act even with the selfish intent of getting rid of an enemy. And Zero, you aren't suggesting that the "will of the people" has any impact on the current government, are you? ANY change will be an improvement on that.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2003
  14. Apr 3, 2003 #13

    russ_watters

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    Clearly, Njorl it will be difficult. But I guess a way you start is with an islamic version of the Bill of Rights and go from there.
     
  15. Apr 3, 2003 #14

    Kerrie

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    I am surprised they didn't call this Operation Iraqi Liberation, or O.I.L.
     
  16. Apr 4, 2003 #15

    FZ+

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    Notice the use of the phrase: "Someone like Saddam". Saddam himself may be removed, but there are plenty of others who wish to exploit the power vacuum. There doesn't seem to be exactly a wealth of potential candidates right now. Democracy is rather pointless without a choice....
    That's not as simple as it appears. Obviously half of Germany remained in Soviet hands. But as to the other half... After the war, many germans did remain pro-hitler - they were not personally affected by his genocides, and indeed supported many of his policies, esp. foreign affairs. After the war, a large de-nazification drive was begun by the government to purge nazi influence. Often it was nearly a form of brain washing. Many segments of nazi ideology still existed up to the 70s. Now, clearly to an extent, the idea of freedom of speech did not exist in Germany at that time. Indeed, it could not exist at that time. While West Germany was economically and politically generally free, ideologically was a different matter. Remember "don't mention the war"? The net result of the repression of that period of history is a social taboo that is only today being broken.
     
  17. Apr 5, 2003 #16
    One thing I have a question concerning the whole democracy issue:

    If this is about democracy, how come the United States' ally in the Afghanistan event was Pakistan (which, the last time I checked, wasn't a democracy)?
     
  18. Apr 5, 2003 #17
    or how come our "coalition of the willing" is made up of some very non democratic governments and even many of the supposably "democratic" ones do not even have the majority support of their people? the last i knew that is not what people who love freedom and democracy do.
     
  19. Apr 6, 2003 #18

    kat

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    Or Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeezzzz..how come some people are so objective to the U.S. alliance with nondemocratic countries yet so insistent that it listen to a predominately nondemocratic group of people such as that which convene under the umbrella of the U.N.? The horror. The horror.
     
  20. Apr 6, 2003 #19
    Jeez, Kat, can you do ANYTHING besides post about how you think no one should ever dare criticize America?
     
  21. Apr 6, 2003 #20

    kat

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    Obviously your ignoring or neglecting to read a number of my post in this forum. It's not my fault your left winged friends neglect to look at the whole picture and are subject to tunnel vision. Give me a break. I can't point out hypocrisy when I see it, but you and they can? Christ.
     
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