Sunday, May 27, 2007


The polls are open in Syria!

For all the talk among anti-war folks about how Arabs aren't ready for democracy, various autocratic states in the Arab world sure do go to great lengths to pretend they have democracy:

Syrian President Bashar Assad cast his vote at a polling station Sunday as part of a one-day public referendum to endorse him for a second term and bolster his autocratic rule.

Assad, who is the sole candidate and guaranteed a victory, did not speak to reporters after he voted.

Yet this is just a sham. Assad is no democrat:

But he has since clamped down on pro-democracy activists, showing the limits of his reforms and attracting harsh criticism from human rights groups. Regime critics point to rampant corruption and mass arrests. In the last two months, six government critics and human rights campaigners were convicted and sentenced to up to 12 years in prison.

I'm sure our House Speaker can instruct Assad on how to interpret his mandate from the people. No doubt it will involve our retreat from Iraq.

You know, Iraq? That actual democracy struggling against murderous thugs?