Monday, January 03, 2005

Hammorabi Sam's 2005

Sam at Hammorabi sums up what many Iraqis and friends of Iraqis hope for the year 2005.
The year 2005 should be the year of ending the terrorists in Iraq. It should see the start of democracy, reconstruction and peace in Iraq.

Sam also reports that the tide may be changing inside Iraq.
In spite of threats and intimidations by the terrorist and pro-Saddam groups more Iraqis are coming to help the Iraqi forces by providing information about strangers and or strange behaviours in their areas. The best example is the information which resulted in freeing of two kidnapped Iraqis in Omarah and arresting at least 7 terrorists working under the name of a humanitarian organization. They have been arrested after buying arms and explosives for their groups in Baghdad. The Iraqis need to do much more to clean their areas from the killers and the terrorists. The other factor which may helped a lot is the important documents which have been found in Falluja though there are strong indications that the terrorist groups have changed their plans, codes and tactics since then.

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Kurdo informs us that soon Kurdistan will have two airports up and running.
After the 2003 war, work on two airports began in Kurdistan. The first one which has officially started working is called "Hawler International Airport". . The second one which will start working is called "Sulaimani International Airport" will open on 15th of February 2005. Finally, we can fly. The first direct flight from Kurdistan to outside world has taken place a couple of days ago from Hawler (Erbil) to Jeddah (in Saudi Arabia) to transfer the Hajis (pilgrimagers) from Kurdistan to Saudi Arabia.

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Sandmonkey responds to Commenter MaGdee. You MUST read that post. Here's just a taste.
To answer your question MaGdee, no, spending 5 years in the US didn’t make me an American, but it led me to further understand American life, society and perspective. Unlike the majority of Internationals that go there for school, I actually made an effort to make American friends and try to understand their society and way of life a little. I am actually capable of seeing things from their perspective as well as the Egyptian one. I know that being able to hold and compare 2 different points of views or perspectives might seem really hard for you to do, but it isn’t for me. My point is, there are some things in American society that I disagreed with, but a lot that I agreed with, found lacking in our own and wished we had. You know, like being able to debate ideas, hold democratic elections, freedom of speech, religious freedom, Tolerance for other cultures and religions. You know, crazy radical notions like that. But you, of course as the defender of everything egyptian, Arabic and Islamic, are against all that, right? Ohh, And I was in the states 2 years before 9/11 you idiot. Check the math.

Read the whole thing. Sandmonkey takes MaGdee apart with the same methodical coolness of Hannibal Lecter preparing his next "meal."


UPDATE: Sandmonkey cubed and sauted MaGdee with such efficiency that commenters have stopped by his blog to give him Mad Props.

Commenter Iosefo writes:
OUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! After a rebuke like that, I don't think MaGdee will be able to sit down for a week! I think it's safe to say you gave him a sound spanking! As well as giving me a good laugh. As for being pro -Israel, there's a website you may like arabsforisrael.com. There are other's who share your point of view there. Keep posting.


Bridget chimes in:
Damn. Sandmonkey, remind me not to ever piss you off.


Louise was impressed enough to suggest that Sandmonkey take on a new contract to whack Ken, her blog-nemesis.
Oh yes. Perhaps you could go to work on my favourite Canadian pinko/wacko leftie, who calls himself ken. He's not to be confused with any Ken who uses the customary capital letter at the beginning. Trouble is, he's already reproduced. However, his retro ideology could certainly be deflated with a few good pokes by your stinging prose.


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Some of our readers have wondered what Sandmonkey looks like.

Iraqi Bloggers Central offers its readers today exclusive photos of the infamous Sandmonkey!

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Husayn notes that the Sunnis are starting to move in favor of the elections.
Interesting about-face going on in some parts of Iraqs, Sunni groups are now encouraging Sunnis to get involved with the elections in Iraq. I dont know if this is due to a realization that not being involved is politically stupid, or if the leaders of various Sunni groups are geniunly in support of democracy, but I think its a good trend.

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BREAKING NEWS! BREAKING NEWS! BREAKING NEWS!

The Ali of Liberal Iraqi is indeed Ali Fadhil! His blog is now called Free Iraqi.

Ali explains what happened a few weeks ago.

Hey Ali, we were with you 100% before and we are now! Thanks for the explanation. Don't feel bad, please! There is absolutely nothing to feel sorry about. Your concerns are plain to everyone here.

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Over at the Middle East Times, Claude Salhani asks and offers a few answers to a basic question: Where is the Mideast's democracy?
Compared to Eastern Europe, what has the Arab World accomplished in the last decade? What noteworthy changes have occurred? What moves toward democracy have they adopted in the last 10 years? Which one of the 22 Arab League members can truly claim to have held fair elections? Is there one country that can speak of a parliamentary opposition that contributes positively to the democratic process? Is there one that can boast an independent press, free to criticize its government?

Regrettably, we would be hard-pressed to answer "yes" to those questions when it relates to any one Arab country. In the last 30 or so years, most have been governed by the same leaders, or by the children of those leaders. Free elections are non-existent, or at best organized in such a way that results are guaranteed to offer the ruling party a clear-cut victory: usually one hovering around 99 percent of the vote.


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IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT!

Friends of Iraqi Bloggers Central and Dear Old Jeffrey!

Stephen at Iraq Elections Blog has UNBLOCKED me!!!

Thank you, Stephen.

My friends, please thank Stephen if you stop by his website. He is doing all of us a great service by updating us each day on election-related events inside Iraq. I know how much hard work he has been putting in to keep us informed.

And thanks to all my friends who spoke out in my defense. I am honored to be shoulder-to-shoulder with all of you in our struggle for a democratic Iraq.

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Faiza has posted a very interesting blog entry.
When I went to receive the medicines sent by Raid, as donations for the hospitals around Fallujah, to treat the local residents, and the families that fled the hell of battles, I had the driver with me, who was an old man, a resident of Fallujah, and I said to him: we should participate in the coming elections.
He said: No, we do not want to participate.
Why? I asked.
He answered: Because the coming government would be on the side of America.
I said: who said so? Perhaps some honest Iraqis will come, so, why judge in advance? Would you elect me, if I my name would be in the list?
He said: yes, I would elect you.
I said: so, we should form a new, national Iraqi government, one who loves the Iraqis, and remove the occupation out of the country. It would be a mixture of all Iraqis…Arabs and Kurds, Muslims and Christians, Sunnis and Shi’aat.
He said: No, no Shi’aats, we do not want them.
I got angry, asking him: who taught you to say this? I am a Shi’aat, and I am going to donate medicine to the people of Fallujah, and you are Sunnies, so, why should I care??
He laughed and said: you are a good woman, may GOD bless you.
Then I continued: all these are stories made up by our enemies, to disrupt our unity, no Sunni, and no Shi’aat, I beleive we are Iraqis, brothers, right?
Right, he said.
I said: then, the coming government shall be a mixture of all Iraqis.
He said: Listen, you are educated, so you understand, but I am not, and all you say is true... so, I'll do whatever you say. I laughed a lot, because of his honesty and naivety, wishing that all the people could have the ability to admitt ignorance, and the mistake of evaluating matters as simply as this.

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