Sunday, September 26, 2004

The Sunday Star-Times has as interview with Iraqi PM Iyad Allawi today (sadly not online), in which he doesn't come across too well. But more interesting is his comment quoted in the story about the safe return of the New Zealand engineers from Basra:

Meanwhile, Iraq's interim prime minister, Iyad Allawi, has called on New Zealand to do more to help his country fight terrorism.

In an interview with the Sunday Star-Times, Allawi said Iraq was now the centre of an international war.

"Frankly, here (in Iraq) we are defending you in New Zealand . . . They (the insurgents in Iraq) will go back to New York, they'll go to London, they'll go to New Zealand. . . they'll go everywhere."

This is simply Tui-able; the primary motivation for the insurgants in Iraq is nationalism - kicking the Americans out. They are overwhelmingly locals fighting for a local cause. While we may have a preference as to who wins, there's simply no way that it can be construed as defending New Zealand.

And OTOH, can we really blame a guy who was put in power by the Americans and who is utterly dependent on outside assistance from trying to get others to help keep him in power and prop up his regime of unelected torturers?