The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Thursday, February 24, 2005  

With Body & Soul

Jeanne d’Arc of Body & Soul offers some thoughts about the new Iraq in “Hell and High Water”:

Right now it looks like the best outcome anyone can realistically imagine in Iraq -- the outcome that doesn't involve civil war and the kind of complete social collapse that made Afghanistan a happy home for terrorists -- is something that may not be worse than Saddam, but, if you’re one of the out groups, doesn’t look like much of an improvement either.

With the near certainty of Ibrahim Jafari becoming prime minister, it’s impossible to conceive of women’s rights being equal to what they were in pre-war Iraq. Jafari was behind a move last year to make sharia the legal basis for family law. [...]

So let’s see what we have here. Religious fanatics controlling women’s lives. A convicted embezzler [Ahmad Chalabi] running the most lucrative parts of the economy. And “security” in the hands of death squads.

Forget whether or not this is the democracy the neo-cons promised. That’s always been a bad joke. The question now is, is it even an improvement?

Let’s call it “Asylum: Lunatics in Control of,” the Iraqi version.

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