In September, former president and Nobel Peace Prize-winner Jimmy Carter said on NBC's "Today": "I personally do not believe they're going to be ready for the election in January ... because there's no security there."
Democrat moneyman George Soros said in a speech to the National Press Club last fall: "All my experience ... has taught me that democracy cannot be imposed by military means." (But see: Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Afghanistan and El Salvador.) Of course Soros' "experience" consists mostly of liberating billions of dollars from the captivity of other people's bank accounts. He's a regular Douglas MacArthur, that Soros guy.
Expressing his faith in the Iraqi people, Soros continued: "Iraq would be the last place I would choose for an experiment in introducing democracy." All those blue-inked fingers were the Iraqi people giving Soros the finger.
Also taking his cue on world politics from Janeane Garofalo, last September U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan said he doubted there would be elections in January, saying, "You cannot have credible elections if the security conditions continue as they are now" ? although he may have been referring here to a possible vote of the U.N. Security Council.
Robert Fisk of the Independent (U.K.) told an audience in October 2004: "The chances of [January] elections are fading faster than water running into the desert." He said it was a "lie" that the allies were creating "an oasis of democracy with its center in Iraq." Remind me not to ask Fisk who he likes in the Super Bowl.
The Economist magazine said that until security in Iraq improves, "reconstruction will stall ? and the hopes of Messrs. Allawi and Bush for a decent election, enabling a strong and legitimate government to take over, will continue to look uncertain to be fulfilled."
In October, Nicholas Lemann was a whirlwind of bad news about Iraq, writing in the New Yorker: "The U.S. military in Iraq has started trying to take back areas of the country now controlled by insurgents, and it may not be safe enough there for the scheduled elections to be held in January." Somehow he failed to add, "Also, by mid-March live rhesus monkeys may be flying out of my butt."
Amid his litany of bad news, Lemann said: "It is difficult to find anybody in Washington, in either party, who will seriously defend Bush's management of Iraq." Fortunately, last Sunday, President Bush found 8 million people ? outside of Washington ? to seriously defend his management of Iraq.