Thursday, October 2
I'm glad to have Walker on board, especially since his first first post below povide a great springboard to something in the Washington Post today. Iraqi schoolkids apparently did just start back to school, at least to collect supplies donated by America for the new school year, and it might have made a great commercial of the kind Walker discusses. Although the handout was fairly chaotic, lots of the kids were happy with what they got, and they're quoted in the piece.
But the little boy who is the focus of the article was not so lucky, and he came away more or less emptyhanded. His reaction serves as a great summary for what we're heard from so many Iraqis: "I'm not happy, because they didn't give me anything." Now, we'd all like this little boy to have pencils or whatever, and you expect kids to be upset when they don't get what they want, so I don't want to be too hard on him. But the problem is that his sentiment is being expressed all over Iraq, by people who are older and wiser.
Listen, friends, is takes some time to turn a run-down dictatorship whose economy was centrally (and badly) planned into a democracy. Hang with us, though - we're better at it than anyone else around.