Who wasn’t moved to see the extraordinary efforts of Iraqis in the United States and elsewhere (out of Iraq) to vote for their new government? The article in the Detroit Free Press says that nearly 10,000 Iraqi expatriates voted in Michigan alone and that a total of about 28,500 voted in the five polling places set up nationwide. The article in the Salt Lake Tribune tells that nearly 150 Iraqis, including Kurds, made the trip from Utah, some driving more than 1,500 miles for the opportunity to vote. CNN’s coverage included this quote from an organizer in California: “”We’ve got people calling from as far away as Canada, saying they plan on coming to vote. This is becoming like a celebration for us.”
I was amazed to see the figure of 240,000 registered Iraqi voters in the United States. Can there really be that many? Are any hoping to return to Iraq if security and civil order are assured?
Congratulations to these expats. Here’s hoping that the new government is able to take charge, establish order, and protect the rights of Iraqi citizens so that families can be reunited and all can live without the fear of tyranny.