On the Bush Legacy,...
A retort on liberals who say the Iraq War was pointless:
Thursday, January 29, 2009
By HAMZA HENDAWI, Associated Press Writer
An outpouring of such Sunni emotions _ resentment, frustration, desire to step off the political sidelines _ is expected in Saturday's elections for provincial council seats.
Across the Sunni Arab heartland _ a vast wedge of Iraq between the Kurdish north and Shiite south _ the voting offers the region's first real political personality test since the 2003 invasion swept away the Sunni benefactor and guardian, Saddam Hussein.
The contests for local councils are about who will be carrying the strongest Sunni voice in the years ahead as the U.S. military presence shrinks and Iraqi authorities struggle with every conceivable challenge _ from preventing the insurgency from rebuilding to keeping the lights burning.
Sunnis, who widely boycotted the last provincial council elections in 2005, are believed to be falling in two general directions: either toward the Sunni Iraqi Islamic party in the current government or the newly influential Sunni tribes who rose up against al-Qaida in Iraq and other jihadist groups.
And then there's this story:
Friday, January 30, 2009
By KIM GAMEL, Associated Press Writer
MOSUL, Iraq — This weekend's election in Mosul is a showdown for power between Arabs and Kurds, with the outcome likely to influence whether al-Qaida and other Sunni insurgents lose their last major urban foothold in Iraq.
U.S. officials say the insurgency remains a potent force in Mosul, Iraq's third largest city, in part because the majority Sunni Arab population believes it is poorly served by a local government dominated by Kurds.
Voters have a chance to change that when they select members of ruling provincial councils here and in most of the country in Saturday's balloting, the first election in three years.