Monday, May 14, 2007

How Would You Like Your 'Wall Resolution' Served?

Photo by Ali Yussef/AFP
It seems like most of the Iraqi blogoshere is abuzz with news of the Great Wall of Adhamiya. Haven't heard of it? Where have you been? Well, this isn't a roundup, so you can go here to get up to speed on it. Or here, just from IraqSlogger. OK, here are a few links from Riverbend, Konfused Kid, Zeyad @ Healing Iraq, Iraq the Model, and 24 Steps to Liberty.

In comments on the latter, I opened up the discussion with this:
24, I read that ISF and MNF who arrived on scene at yesterday's massive resistance/terrorist bombings were pelted with rocks and insults. Maybe the MNF & gov't see this as a way to prevent some kinds of violence at least for a time, because the perception is that they have to do more to stop the bombings?

You know, you can tear the wall down in a little while when it's no longer needed. Makes for a great party.
I jumped to the conclusion that the wall was part of the Baghdad Security Plan and was being erected to limit movement of death squads into Adhamiya or insurgent/terrorist suicide bombers out of it, in order to reduce sectarian violence and save Iraqi lives. Silly me. It turns out that the wall is being described as another nail in Iraq's sectarian coffin, part of an evil US/Maliki plan to segregate & starve Sunnis, compared to the Warsaw ghetto and even Nazi concentration camps, and so on.

24 Steps took offense at my optimism, and smacked me down for I think the third time that I can remember:
“the MNF & gov’t see this as a way to prevent some kinds of violence at least for a time.”

How exactly? By provoking more Iraqis against them and each other? By telling people “fuck you. We don’t care what you think. We are going to isolate Shiites from Sunnis?” or by telling the mixed families that they have to do the same inside their houses, build walls to separate the Sunni mother from the Shiite father?

Why don’t they take it the easier way? Just show me what you will do with the insurgents you will capture? You have thousands of them. Execute only 100. That is legal according to the Iraqi constitution.

Also, RhusLancia if you don’t think this is a serious matter, don’t comment please because all you did with your first comment is to infuriate me more and insult my people.

“You know, you can tear the wall down in a little while when it’s no longer needed. Makes for a great party.” That is just very irresponsible to say. If you live in a stable country and have a stable life, don’t make fun of others’ miseries.
I apologized to him and made my case as the comments progressed, and he made his. No hard(er) feelings, I hope.

But that's not really what I wanted to talk about. I was just checking out Truth About Iraqis to see how bad "bad" is, where I learned the Iraqi Parliament had voted against the wall.

This was very interesting, so I started looking around to see what kind of details I could find. How many voted for/against? What did it say? Was it 'binding' or 'non-binding'? Etc. The Iraqis don't have C-Span (as far as I know), nor do they have a good gov't site for finding legislative information (their official website is pretty sparse).

However, I did find information on this vote. The funny thing is, I found key details of the vote
reported several different ways.

So, how do you want your 'Wall Resolution' served:

Fried: this is an AP version of the story, and the one that Truth About Iraqis posted in it's entirety. Relevent excerpt:
A stormy session in an Iraqi parliament culminated in an overwhelming vote against security walls going up around Baghdad.
Scrambled: the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) had this to say:
Out of a total of 138 MPs, the 88 present voted unanimously against the construction of such walls and demanded the removal of the temporary walls placed around Adhamiya District that had cause much uproar.
Poached: the AP offers another story, and this one has by far the most detail. Their results:
The resolution, voted on by a show of hands, passed 138-to-88 in the 275- member house. The president and his two deputies must unanimously approve the legislation for it to become law, or else it will be sent back to the house for re-examination.
So there it is. The parliament had an overwhelming vote where the 88 out of 138 parliamentarians present unanimously passed the measure, in a 138-to-88 show of hands.

I can understand how hard it is to get accurate details when the Resistance has a successful operation against the Crusaders by blowing up a market place and mass murdering Iraqi civilians, but shouldn't it be easier to find out about legislation that could have such a profound impact on the situation there?

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