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Tuesday, September 23, 2003
But what do the Iraqis think?

We certainly know the press thinks this is a "quagmire," and we're told daily about how unhappy the Iraqis are with their "occupiers." Combine that with the seemingly daily reports of the dead and injured, including US soldiers, and we're really led to believe that there is a massive popular revolt taking place.

But what do the Iraqis think? Well I think a lot of people missed the results of the first Zogby International survey of a random cross section of Iraqis. It was reported first by Karl Zinmeister in the Wall Street Journal on September 10th (a good reason why this hasn't gotten a lot of play). Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Mr. Zinsmeister said Zogby found:

* Seven of 10 Iraqis think their country and personal lives will be better in five years with Saddam is out of power. One in three think things will be "much better."
* Three of four said politics, not the economy, will be the toughest part of reconstruction, but more than six in 10 specifically said no to a radical Islamic government.
* The most popular government model is the U.S. republic, which got more support than the despotic regimes in Syria, Iran and Egypt combined.
* Nearly 60 percent have unfavorable opinions of Osama bin Laden, and three of four said Hussein and his henchmen should be punished for their despotism and depravity.
* Two-thirds said coalition forces should stick around for at least another year to make sure Iraq doesn't revert to totalitarianism.

That's quite a different picture isn't it? The survey reveals that 69.7% of Iraqis feel that their country will be better off five years from now and 70.9% feel that they will personally be better off five years from now. Why do you think that is?

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