Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Early handover

The US has handed over sovereignty in Iraq two days ahead of schedule.

In a real sense, this changes nothing. The interim government has been de-facto sovereign since the dissolution of the IGC earlier in the month. The violence will no doubt continue. And the "sovereignty" will be highly contrained by 135,000 well-armed American soldiers, who will continue to wage war on the Iraqi people with or without the new government's approval. But despite all this, it's impossible not to feel happy for Iraq. While I'm pessimistic, there's some chance that things will turn out OK, and that the new democracy won't be stillborn into martial law, a security crackdown, and endlessly "postponed" elections.

And in other good news, they will apparently be arresting and formally charging Saddam Real Soon Now. The Iraqis get first crack at him, and while I disagree violently with their plans to execute him, there's no question of jurisdiction. At the same time, the fuckers who propped him up, and turned a blind eye to his abuses because he was a useful tool against Iran should be in the dock too. Hmmm - I guess that's another foreign jurisdiction Rumsfeld won't be able to visit.