Riverbend complains that her family in Baghdad has not had any water for six days and wonders if this could be part of a campaign to drive Iraqis to the voting stations.
I’m sure people outside of the country are shaking their heads at the words ‘collective punishment’. “No, Riverbend,” they are saying, “That’s impossible.” But anything is possible these days. People in many areas are being told that if they don’t vote- Sunnis and Shia alike- the food and supply rations we are supposed to get monthly will be cut off... What sort of democracy is it when you FORCE people to go vote for someone or another they don’t want?Meanwhile, a Knight-Ridder analysis of events in Iraq concludes that there is now way for the US forces to "win" in any meaningful way:
... We've given up on democracy, security and even electricity. Just bring back the water.
-- U.S. military fatalities from hostile acts rose from an average of about 17 per month in May 2003 to a current average of 82 per month;
-- The average number of U.S. soldiers wounded by hostile acts per month has spiraled from 142 to 808 during the same period;
-- Attacks on the U.S.-led coalition since November 2003 rose from 735 a month to 2,400 in October;
-- The average number of mass-casualty bombings has grown from zero in the first few months of the U.S.-led occupation to an average of 13 per month; and
-- Electricity production has been below prewar levels since October.