In the Iraqi election Sunnis are crying foul, which is not surprising as the Shiites and Kurds, thanks to the Americans, are running the show. Only in Sunni stronghold such as Anbar did the Sunnis stand a chance.
It’s the same old story of sectarian manoeuvring, cheating, voter intimidation and power seizing, which unfortunately the US authority cannot control. The secular leaders that the Americans backed, Allawi and Chalabi, have not made any decent headway as voters went for the religious parties. Allawi threatened to boycott the Iraqi parliament because of the scandalous vote counting.
Unlike the referendum, the Sunnis have come out in force to vote, with even the insurgents holding off their campaign of violence to allow their Sunni brethren to vote. But in some Sunni areas, the outcome for the constituencies have instead gone the other way, which have the losers accusing the election officers of fraud.
I heard on the news on TV that in a few constituencies, where Sunnis dominate and the election result was expected to take several days to count, the result had miraculously been completed within a short period of time, with the Shiite candidates winning of course.
A Sunni leader said: "What would we tell those whom we indirectly convinced to stop the attacks during the election period? What would we tell those people who wanted to boycott and whom we convinced to participate?"
Another appealed to the USA for international intervention, saying: "We call on the President of the United States not to add another mistake to the mistakes already made in Iraq. This election is completely false … Everything was based on fraud, cheating, frightening people and using religion to frighten them. It's terrorism more than democracy."
For a background to the sectarian fiddling in an election, read my earlier posting on the referendum Iraq Constitution Sits Atop Dodgy Figures.
That should have already alerted the US as to what the election would be like.