February 5, 2009

VIETNAMIZATION WORKS AGAIN:

Iraq's Remarkable Election: The government ensured integrity and security. Iran and sectarianism were the big losers. (KIMBERLY KAGAN and FREDERICK W. KAGAN, 2/05/09, WSJ)

The security was an impressive demonstration of the capabilities of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and its legitimacy with Iraqis. Iraqi National Police, local police, and Iraqi Army troops were entirely responsible for the physical security of all polling places on election day. They rehearsed procedures for requesting and receiving quick-reaction forces drawn from Coalition and other Iraqi troops, but did not need to implement these emergency plans.

There had been reason to fear suicide bombers at polling sites, but none struck. But Iraqis were confident enough to bring their children to polling places. This was the first time that U.S. forces were not increased prior to an Iraqi election.

The Iraqi High Electoral Commission played a role in conducting legitimate elections. It standardized procedures for ISF securing the polls. Working in conjunction with the U.N. Assistance Mission Iraq, the commission guided the registration of voters and candidates, and oversaw polling procedures, absentee balloting, and the counting of ballots.

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Posted by Orrin Judd at February 5, 2009 9:09 AM
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