Thursday, July 21, 2005

Mixed Messages to Iraq

Iraqis would make "a terrible mistake" in adopting any constitution that sharply curbs women's rights, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Wednesday. "[This] is a matter the Department of State and the White House are worrying through with the Iraqi people," he said.

Yet, just last week as reported in the New York Times:

American officers involved in the $11 billion effort to train and equip Iraq's army and police have privately acknowledged that they know of instances in which police commandos have violated detainees' rights, using various forms of physical abuse. One senior officer said American commanders have insisted to Iraqi generals that the abuse plays into the hands of the insurgents and that it should stop. "But in the end, this is an Iraqi war, and the Iraqis will fight it in their own way," the officer said, in a discussion that he agreed to on condition that he not be named.

I agree that reducing womens rights is a mistake, however which is it? We interfere with Iraq or we let them do it their way? If we sit back and know that abuse is happening and don't do anything about it because they have to "fight it in their own way" then disagree with how they are writing their constitution what message are we sending?

It's okay to abuse prisoners even kill them but make sure you write a constitution we here in the US agree with? We'll look the other way to corruption that is creating worse humanitarian conditions than under Saddam but we will speak on removing the requirement for a percentage of women in the National Assembly.

As the rest of the article points out there is now some doubt that the August 15 deadline can be met since the Sunnis have pulled out of working on the drafting of the constitution due to security concerns. If there is no Sunni participation the chances of approval are diminished.

1 comment:

Steve said...

More paternalism, more sticking our nose into their business, but most of all more hypocrisy.

We are over there (the latest excuse) to spread freedom and democracy, then we tell them how to build their own country.....and you are right, the same people who tore down Kerry for being a flip-flopper are totally duplicitous...