|Today there was very good news out of Iraq on two fronts. The first piece of good news is that there was finally a compromise reached on drafting a constitution for the interim government.
The bill strikes a compromise between the more religious sects of the Iraqi population, and the ones who want a more secular society. The interim constitution allows for protection of basic freedoms like speech and due process, while allowing some aspects of Islam to be incorporated into law.
There will be a democratically elected president, with a cabinet, and a Prime Minister to oversee the cabinet. There will be allowances, sort of a quota that 20% of the government will be made up of women.
Specifics on voting, day to day government responsibilities, and a permanent constitution will be discussed after the Iraqi provisional government takes over on July 1st.
The second good news is that Iraqi oil production is almost up to pre-war numbers with exportation of 2.5 million barrels a day of crude. Iraq exported 2.8 million barrels a day before the war. This will bring billions to a struggling economy and will help ensure stability which will increase the chances of democracy succeeding in Iraq.
A lot of the work done to ensure these successes was done with the United States closely watching and assisting. The much maligned Halliburton had a vital role in rebuilding the oil infrastructure, such as pipelines, and oil drakes. They are after all one of only a handful of companies, and the only major American company able to do work on this sort of scale.
Democracy succeeding in Iraq is much more than just having democracy in a previously undemocratic country. It is a first step towards injecting democracy and stability into an increasingly unstable area of the world. It will be very hard work, but it is work that must be done. For once a few taste the sweet nectar of freedom, everyone in the region will want to drink from the cup.
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