Is it just me, or is this article just a little bit ridiculous?
April 13, 2005
February 26, 2005
ABC Down the Drain
Peter Jenning's special in depth report on UFO's has made me lose all faith in that man, and that network.
February 02, 2005
Well, I guess I have to eat my own words. The Iraqi election had a higher voter turnout (percentage wise) than the last American Presidential election. And consider that over here, no one is trying to blow up polling stations...
January 28, 2005
I think that this article provides some very important information. As far as I know, it is accurate, and it explains the process of the upcoming Iraqi elections in a precise and thorough manner.
"(CNN) -- Iraqis vote Sunday in the country's first multiparty elections in almost 50 years. About 13 million residents are eligible to vote at 30,000 polling stations across Iraq. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Iraqi expatriates also are eligible to vote, with the largest group in Iran.
Q: How will the election work?
A: For the purposes of the National Assembly election, the whole of Iraq will form a single electoral district, and 111 political entities (political parties, coalitions or individuals) will field lists of candidates. Eligible voters can caste their vote for a single electoral list, and seats will be distributed to political entities based on the proportion of total votes that they receive. For example, a party receiving 20 percent of the vote would receive 55 seats in the 275-member assembly.
Iraqis also will vote for members of 18 provincial councils. Residents in the Kurdish region will cast ballots for a Kurdish parliament.
Q: When are results expected?
A: Official results are expected in 10 days. Early counts are expected in less than a week.
Q: What will the National Assembly's powers be?
A: The primary duty of the transitional National Assembly will be to draft a new Iraqi Constitution by August 15, 2005. This new constitution must be submitted to a national referendum by October 15, 2005. The National Assembly also will serve as the parliament of Iraq, with the power to make laws and to elect a president and two deputies from among its members.
Q: What are the major electoral slates and political parties?
A: The United Iraqi Alliance, a Shiite Muslim-dominated electoral slate backed by the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, is the largest electoral list on the ballot. The alliance includes major Shiite parties -- the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, the Islamic Dawa Party and the Iraqi National Congress -- as well as other Shiite organizations and some smaller Kurdish, Sunni Muslim and minority groups. The list has a number of prominent religious candidates but also includes some secularists.
The Iraqi List, led by interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi, includes the Iraqi National Accord, the Iraqi Democracy Movement and a variety of smaller parties. The Iraqi List is a predominately secular list and has Shiite and Sunni candidates. Interim President Ghazi al-Yawer, a Sunni, heads a slate known simply as The Iraqis, which is looking to attract Sunni voters with strong tribal loyalties.
The two main Kurdish political parties, the Kurdistan Democratic Party and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, have combined to form a single electoral slate called the Kurdistan Alliance List. The list also includes nine smaller Kurdish parties and is targeted at voters from Iraq's Kurdish north. The Iraqi Communist Party also is fielding a list.
Q: Are all parties participating?
A: Two influential Sunni groups are boycotting the election. The moderate Iraqi Islamic Party says the level of violence makes free and fair elections impossible, and the Association of Muslim Scholars says that free elections are not possible in a U.S.-occupied Iraq.
Q: Who is expected to win the election?
A: Parties representing the Shiite majority, particularly the United Iraqi Alliance and the Iraqi List, are expected to win the most seats in the assembly. Kurdish parties also are expected to fare well because of high voter turnout and political stability anticipated in the Kurdish north.
The traditionally powerful Sunni minority will almost certainly lose political ground to the more populous Shiites. If elections proceed on schedule, a boycott by powerful Sunni groups and violence in Sunni-dominated areas of the country likely will keep many Sunnis away from the polls and decrease their level of representation in the National Assembly.
Q: What security measures will there be?
A: Saturday, Sunday and Monday will be a national holiday period in Iraq. A nationwide curfew, travel restrictions and border restrictions will be in effect. No civilians will be allowed to carry weapons during that period. On Election Day, all civilian vehicle traffic will be banned. Security will be primarily provided by Iraqi security forces, but U.S.-led coalition forces will be on standby. About 150,000 U.S. forces will be in Iraq. The number of trained Iraqi security forces is less clear."
Picture From http://www.pbs.org/newshour/extra/images/jan-june03/map_ethnic_iraq.gif
January 27, 2005
20 people were killed by hostile Iraq nationalists today. 19 Iraqi citizens, and one US soldier were killed when several polling stations were attacked. The US soldier was hit by a mortar round that injured four other Americans. I expect the violence to increase as the election draws near, and would not be surprised if, come Saturday, several polling stations are attacked. This kind of thing may intimidate people into not showing up, or it may backfire on the terrorists, and increase voter turnout. I think that some Iraq citizens will have a "Ill be damned if they're going to intimidate me!" attitude. I would still be willing to bet though, that the total voter turnout is less than this year's American Presidential voter turnout; percentage wise.