Saturday, October 16, 2021

A failed state walks into a bar and meets a failed press

Dilan Sirwan (RUDAW) reports, "The Iraqi electoral commission announced the official preliminary results of the Iraqi parliamentary elections late Saturday night, following the manual recount of votes from thousands of polling stations." 

So that's what they announced, now let's deal with reality.  The same commission announced ahead of the elections (last Sunday), that they would announce the results the following day.  That would have been Monday.  There was no reason to have made such an announcement or such an absurd claim.  But they made it.  And they didn't keep it.  

And I wondered if we were the only ones paying attention but, no, Mina al-Orabi of THE NATIONAL demonstrated that at least one other person was paying attention.

The Commission shouldn't have made the promise to begin with but they did.  They told the Iraqi people it would be done on Monday and it wasn't.  They did this in an environment of distrust.  Going into the election, in the months leading up, it was known that a growing distrust of the government was going to lead to a depressed turnout.  It was known.  The last thing needed was for any other government body to make a promise that they couldn't keep.  In this environment, the commission made a promise that it should have known (and probably did know) it couldn't keep.

That was dangerous, that was stupid and it was uncalled for.

Outside of Iraq, if most people even know the above, that's all they likely know.  But if you live in Iraq, you know a lot more.  More than we could ever, ever list.  But we'll note one more thing.  Three years ago, there was parliamentary election in Iraq.  The results were hotly contested.  The commission promised a manual recount.  Any of this sounding familiar because, for some reason, western outlets have amnesia and are stupidly unaware of it.  So there was going to be a manual recount.  How did that turn out?

It didn't.

The commission halted it.  Half the ballots were in a Baghdad warehouse that just happened to catch fire meaning no complete manual recount could be done.

In this environment, you do not make a promise you can't keep.

But there's no accountability in Iraq.  

And it's not just the government that fails to be accountable.  It's the western press.

Everyone noting the election in the west should be noting basic things like this.  But they refuse to.

Instead, they go with nonsense like Moqtada al-Sadr "won."  That's strange because in past elections, many other candidates got more seats in parliament than Moqtada's bloc did.  And they weren't called the winners.  

No, we were told, unless they were a sitting prime minister, that they weren't winners.  They just got the most votes.  And now they'd have to compete with others because now was the scramble to form a government.

But somehow, even though that scramble is still on, that's not what the press goes with.

What happens when a failed state meets a failed press?  Look no further than Iraq.

The following sites updated: