Monday, January 31, 2005

Democracy Now! Focuses on Iraq with reporters Robert Fisk, Aaron Glantz & Christian Parenti as well as Ghazwan Al-Mukhtar and MP George Galloway

Democracy Now! brings their usual strong sense of perspective to Iraq.

Headlines for January 31, 2005
- Millions Vote in Iraq Election, Turnout Estimated at 57%
- 44 Die in Over 175 Attacks Across Iraq
- Sunnis Boycott Election Casting Questions of Legitimacy
- Poll: 82% of Sunnis & 69% of Shiites Want U.S. Withdrawal
- Report: U.S. Responsible For Majority of Civilian Deaths in Iraq
- Up to 15 Die in UK Plane Crash North of Baghdad
- Media Giants Appeal Court Ruling On Ownership Rules
- Halliburton To Pull Out of Iran
- Third Conservative Pundit Found To Be On Gov't Payroll
- Sen. Feingold Introduces Bill to Abolish Death Penalty

Robert Fisk on Iraq Elections: Iraqis Voting for "Freedom From Foreign Occupation"
A day after elections in Iraq, we go to Baghdad to speak with Robert Fisk, chief Middle East correspondent for the London Independent. Fisk says, "What this election has done is not actually a demonstration of people who demand democracy, but they want freedom of a different kind, freedom to vote, but also freedom from foreign occupation. And if they are betrayed in this, then we are going to look back and regret the broken promises.

Candidates on Kurdish Electoral Slate Include Former Baathists
Kurds - who make up about 20% of Iraq's population - voted in large numbers in Sunday's elections. Pacifica reporter Aaron Glantz files a report from Irbil, the regional capital of Iraqi Kurdistan.

Iraqi in Baghdad: "The Election Was Shoved Down Our Throats"
To get an Iraqi perspective on the election, we go to Baghdad to speak with retired Iraqi engineer Ghazwan Al-Mukhtar. Mukhtar says, "What do I do with democracy? Does it allow me to walk across the street without being feared of being kidnapped or being shot at or being mugged or being stolen? Would democracy feed my children? Would democracy allow me to quench my thirst? The U.S. has not done anything at all to improve the life of Iraqi people."

British MP George Galloway: Elections in Occupied Iraq "Flawed Beyond Redemption"
British MP George Galloway responds to the Iraqi elections and discusses his victory over various British newspapers which were forced to print retractions of earlier reports that he had received secret payments from Saddam Hussein.

Occupied Elections: Journalist Christian Parenti on Voting from Afghanistan to Iraq
We speak with Christian Parenti, correspondent for The Nation magazine and author of the new book, The Freedom: Shadows and Hallucinations in Occupied Iraq.

As Marcia notes, "Democracy Now! always worth watching."
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