What a day. I wish I could say something particularly insightful that hasn’t already been said at a hundred different blogs, but really, what more is there to say? Anyone who didn’t get a little choked up at images of Iraqis celebrating and holding up blue fingers is deadened by some political agenda that sure as hell doesn’t have the Iraqis interests at heart.
But it all boils down to this. Juan Cole has (rightly) taken quite a beating across the blogosphere today, particularly over at Instapundit but he seems to have gotten one thing right amidst his barrage of “yes, buts.” Buried in a Washington Post article:
“It was Sistani who demanded one-person, one-vote elections. So to the extent it’s a victory, it’s a victory for Iraqis. The Americans were maneuvered into having to go along with it.”
Yes, Cole, it is a victory for Iraqis, good of you to notice. By happy chance, we happen to be on the side of those Iraqis for whom it was a victory (as opposed to those in Iraq for whom it was a defeat). While Cole seems to have mistaken a difference in specifics (i.e., the particular date on which the election was held) for a difference in goals (i.e., a democratic Iraq), his point holds true: it was a victory for Iraqis. By extension, it was a victory for democracy, and a victory for all those who support democracy, which, by another fortunate chance, includes us. Funny how all of that worked out, ain’t it?