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al-Qaeda's Democracy Problem

AL ASAD AIR BASE, IRAQ: The day before the parliamentary election, al Qaeda issued an “urgent statement announcing new attacks launched today against the American and Iraqi forces’ ‘strongholds,’ and to spoil ‘their celebrations of ‘democratic’ disbelief and adultery.’” Other Islamists and Salafist terrorist groups offered less than forceful protestations of the election and vowed not to commit acts of violence against voters or polling places.

After the latest and not-so-greatest al-Qaeda offensive fizzled out, the terrorist group issued another statement vowing to continue their campaign of terror in Iraq. The question is, to what end? Does al Qaeda have the ability to influence events in Iraq, the forwarding of Democracy?

LtCol Starling, the Operations Officer of Regimental Combat Team - 2, the unit in charge of western Anbar province, met with a very senior tribal leader the day after election and reported Sunnis voted overwhelmingly for Ayad Allawi, a secular Shiite candidate. Another U.S. source well in tune with the populace in Anbar province reported the same information. If this information is accurate, not only are Sunnis voting (their turnout is predicted at about 80%), but they are voting for a Shiite candidate. And there are calls across the board, from Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish leaders to create a government “to promote national unity.”

The Islamic Army of Iraqi laments Shiite control of the government “will be the mother of evils and disaster upon the Sunni people.” Zarqawi has been quite clear about his hatred and disgust for the “apostate” Shiites, and has repeatedly slaughtered Shiites in an attempt to instigate a civil war in Iraq. This is a vein that runs deep among the Salafists; the Shiites are hated more than Westerners for their different interpretation of Islam.

The depth of al-Qaeda’s nightmare in Iraq only deepens. Not only are their attacks less frequent and even less effective in influencing events on the ground, but their natural base of support, the Sunni population, has chosen democracy, and if reports are true, is voting for a secular Shiite to govern Iraq. This would be yet another ideological defeat for al-Qaeda and the rejection of their extremism in the heart of the Muslim world.


Listed below are links that reference al-Qaeda's Democracy Problem:

» al-Qaeda's Democracy Problem from Small Town Veteran
[Read More]

» Iraq Election - Plus 3 Days from Stormwarning's Counterterrorism
I continue to feel good (if not elated) by the 70% turnout for the Iraqi election, and want to believe that it shows that Iraq will be able to move ahead, and not stay mired in the violence that kept [Read More]

» Iraq Election - Plus 6 Days from Stormwarning's Counterterrorism
These are incomplete results. Apparently with close to 95% of the votes now counted in the Dec. 15th Iraqi election, Allawi's secular slate is running 3rd or 4th, depending on which reports you read. The following has been gleaned from [Read More]


Dear Sir,
Be safe and be well. Tell our fighting men and women the same. Their work and commmitment does not go unnoticed in this small part of the world.

Dear Mr. Roggio:

This is a fascinating report about Sunni voting behavior. Our prediction was that Allawi would form the next government in a coalition with Sunni politicians elected from Anbar and elsewhere. But if your report is true, the Sunnis themselves decided to "cut out the middleman" and go straight for Allawi, ending up with the same result, an Allawi-led government.

There is no way that Iraq will stablize if UIA repeats as the leaders of the government. Your report supports the dismissal of this possibility. This should be good news for both Iraq and the U.S.

But as we have suggested in the past, the next phase of violence in Iraq may need to be a military campaign against the Shi'ite militias, the likely (sore) losers in the months ahead.

And then there will be the Iranian response to that, another reaction to monitor.


Merry Christmas Bill. THANK YOU so much for your reports. Glenn J. Baytown, TX

Heard the same thing Bill. Sunnis from north Anbar were voting for Allawi also.

Interesting huh? They (Sunnis) knew they couldn't get their condidates in office so they chose a secular one that will push for nationalism. Smart move and frankly I hope it works. I think Allawi has proven his mettle and could very easily be the right man for the job.

Don't you just know Iran would hate that! heh! And Syria would definitely take another think. Allawi has already pushed their buttons twice! :-o

Sunnis supporting non-fanatic Shiites? If this is symptomatic, it suggests a major development in the on-going political war.

Merry Christmas, Bill!

dan cameron rodill

In January 2005 a video of Zarqawi was shown [see “Democracy a lie”] where he said:

· "We have declared a bitter war against democracy and all those who seek to enact it"
· "Democracy is also based on the right to choose your religion … against the rule of God."
· "For all these issues, we declared war against, and whoever helps promote this and all those candidates, as well as the voters, are also part of this, and are considered enemies of God,"

I vote in every election and am proud to go to the polling station, but I have no confidence that I would have the courage to vote if threatened with violence. Particularly, if after voting my finger was marked with indelible purple ink.

Gene Felder

I wonder now, with the incomplete election results showing Allawi trailing in third place how this election will eventually turn out.

I do wonder the impact of a religious end result of the vote. Clearly the vote will reflect the "voice" of the Iraqi public. But will it end up where the U.S. wants it?