Are you aware of the dynamics at work ? How can you possibly buy into the idea that U.S. officials intend on real democracy and actual self determination for the Iraqis? Do you not see the assumption being made that it is the U.S. that decides when the troops leave? Do you not see how the media, politicians and pundits (and you) all assume it is the U.S.'s decision to make? When the troops leave is the decision for the Iraqis to make, it is their right.
Did you know 82% of Iraqis are "strongly opposed" to the presence of coalition troops. Less than 1% of the population believes coalition forces are responsible for any improvement in security and 72% do not have confidence in the multi-national forces.
Did you know about the surprising degree of consensus reached by the main Iraqi factions at the Arab League-orchestrated Reconciliation Conference in Cairo last weekend sharply undercuts the unilateral, guns-and-puppets approach of the Bush administration to the deteriorating situation in Iraq:
We demand the withdrawal of foreign forces in accordance with a timetable, and the establishment of a national and immediate program for rebuilding the armed forces ... that will allow them to guard Iraq's borders and to get control of the security situation ..
"The Kurds would doubtless prefer for the US to stay, as long as the US doesn't once again betray them, as it has done, repeatedly, in the past. The Sunnis, about as numerous as the Kurds, doubtless want the US out. As for the Shiites, it's not so simple. The Sadrists have called for withdrawal. The last poll I know of was on the eve of the election: about 70% of Shiites favored US withdrawal immediately or right after the January elections. The National Sovereignty Commission of the Parliament recently issued a report calling for a timetable for withdrawal of the "occupation forces." The main Shiite Party in the South, SCIRI, just demanded that the British troops there stay in their barracks. According to Steven Kull, one of the most respected polling experts in the country, the International Republican Institute, which had been taking regular polls, stopped reporting them after the elections because of the results they were finding.
It's correct that an occupying army has no rights, only responsibilities, including the responsibility to pay massive reparations and to withdraw unless there is powerful evidence that the population wants them to stay. I don't see evidence of that. And the decision should be made by the victims. We have little to say about it, whatever our subjective judgments, as a matter of principle." -Chomsky 16 Oct 2005