The Corner

Lights in Iraq

Chaldean bishop lauds Iraqi progress, chides Western media:

The Western press has been unjust towards Iraq. It has focused only on the dark side, on terrorism, killings, car bombs, the cruel images of decapitation. Some went as far as saying violence was justified because it was aimed at the occupiers. Unfortunately, ordinary people are the ones who paid a high price, Muslims and Christians working for the Americans or finding themselves at the wrong place at the wrong time when some car explodes. The so-called “resistance” hardly ever kills Americans. No! Opposition should mean defending the rights of the people, not killing them. If you strike and kill fellow countrymen and women, you are not a resistance fighter, you are but a destroyer, a bearer of death.

The press has been backward-looking focusing on the negative side of the situation, never talking about the positive things the former provisional council did and the present interim government is doing. No one showed that, despite the political upheaval, the uncertainties and lack of security, schools reopened. Whether primary, high and secondary schools, or universities, the normal academic year ended as one would expect.

Under Saddam there was only poverty. Now the economy is slowly reviving thanks to what the government and the Americans are doing. New building sites are opening, new construction is going on. All this in spite of terrorist attacks. How many people paid in blood their commitment to rebuild Iraq? Italians, Japanese, French, Americans, Koreans . . . No one talks about power plants restarting, oil wells reopening, agricultural programmes being launched, roads being rebuilt. . . that were once filled with potholes.

What can one say about the press and freedom of the press? There are at least 150 daily newspapers in the country. And what about demonstrations? Under Saddam, they were banned . . .

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