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IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!

 
Afraid Of the Dark
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User ID: 109815
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09/13/2006 09:49 PM
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IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
Just saw a commercial on MSNBC on this...They call it "the other iraq"


[link to www.theotheriraq.com]
Left wing, Right wing...We're both flying in the wrong direction.

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All information posted and shared through this site by "Afraid Of the Dark" (and all persons associated with this SN) is fictional and for entertainment purposes only. The original poster will not be responsible for any re-representation, reproduction, and outside use. In other words, if you are a gov't official and you are worried that I am a terrorist...I am not. I am simply writing fiction to entertain the community of GLP. Have a nice day.
Afraid Of the Dark (OP)

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09/13/2006 10:33 PM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
None has anything to say about this?
Left wing, Right wing...We're both flying in the wrong direction.

Disclaimer:
All information posted and shared through this site by "Afraid Of the Dark" (and all persons associated with this SN) is fictional and for entertainment purposes only. The original poster will not be responsible for any re-representation, reproduction, and outside use. In other words, if you are a gov't official and you are worried that I am a terrorist...I am not. I am simply writing fiction to entertain the community of GLP. Have a nice day.
Anonymous Coward
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09/13/2006 11:29 PM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
propoganda
Anonymous Coward
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09/14/2006 12:34 AM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
bump

headbang


Hurray for some real news!!
Anonymous Coward
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09/14/2006 12:46 AM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
Too bad the Kurds keep blowing up markets in Turkey and keep killing Turkish politicians!
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09/14/2006 01:17 AM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
Kurds are a blight!
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09/14/2006 01:27 AM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
Is there chirping birds in the background?
Afraid Of the Dark (OP)

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09/14/2006 03:03 AM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
Kurdistan Development Corporation


That's who paid for the website and commercial. Does anyone knwo anything else about this group? Are they a 501c? Nope "private" investors.

Here what I can find...

[link to www.kurdistancorporation.com]

July 31, 2006
Interview With Bayan Rahman Of The Kurdistan Development Corporation
By rob on July 31, 2006 at 10:23 AM 6 Comments
Recently I had the opportunity to interview Bayan Rahman, Chairman of the Kurdistan Development Corporation and High Representative to the United Kingdom for the Kurdistan Regional Government. She is the daughter of a former Deputy Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government (who, along with her brother, was tragically killed by a suicide bomber) and was a journalist for 16 years working for publications like The Financial Times and The Observer.

Ms. Rahman is currently in the United States meeting with the family and friends of soldiers who have fallen in Iraq to thank them for their loved one's sacrifice for Iraq. She is also promoting the KDC's website called The Other Iraq, which is dedicated to showing the positive things that are going on in Iraq (especially the Kurdish region in Northern Iraq). The website is featuring some commercials with Iraqis thanking America for liberating Iraq. I suggest you check them out.

Bayan had a lot of interesting things to say about the situation in Iraq, from the fact that not one coalition soldier has died in the Kurdistan region (which comprises most of northern Iraq) to her opinions on splitting Iraq into three spearate regions.

If you'd like to listen to the interview click here. If you'd like to read it, a full transcript is below in the extended entry.

Rob: Hello this is Rob Port from sayanythingblog.com and Iím talking to Bayan Rahman, the chairman of the Kurdistan Development Corporation. How are you tonight Bayan?

Bayan: Iím very well, thank you very much, Rob.

Rob: Great. Iím going to get right into the questions. Basically can you give me background about yourself and your life in Iraq?

Bayan: Myself? Well Iím from a family that has a long history of opposition to dictatorship and oppression in Iraq. This actually started with my grandfather and then my father was in the leadership of the Kurdish movement Iraq and worked pretty much most of his adult life against Saddam Hussein and his regime so in the 1970ís Saddam, for very complicated, long reasons that I wonít go into now, Saddam wanted to kill a lot of Kurds so many of us fled Iraq including my mother and father and my parents were tried in their absence in a court by Saddam Hussein and sentenced to death so we ended up fleeing Iraq altogether and going to Britain and that is where Iíve spent most of my life.

Rob: Wow, thatís an amazing story. I guess jumping ahead to what youíre doing now, can you explain to me what the Kurdistan Development Corporation is and what your goals are with it?

Bayan: Yes, the Kurdistan Development Corporation is a joint initiative by the Kurdistan regional government and international investors. Our aims are twofold; one is to promote the Kurdistan region to raise awareness of its existence and its culture, its landscape, its business opportunities, its history and then the second part of our work is to actively bring investors to Kurdistan and to create joint features, for example, or just to introduce investors to the Kurdistan region.

Rob: Sure. What sort of economy does Kurdistan have? What sort of industries are there and what are economic conditions like now?

Bayan: Well you have to remember that this is an emerging market. We are emerging after years of conflict and oppression under development in Iraq but on the other hand the Kurdistan region has had a head start compared with the rest of the country. We have had a long period of stability. Even now not one single coalition soldier has been killed in Kurdistan. There isnít an insurgency in the Kurdistan region so we have a stable economic environment and we have right now a boom in the construction industry. For example there is a big shortage of cement because a lot of the housing is made of concrete so there is a boom in the construction industry, a boom in retail. We think that agriculture will be an area for investment in Kurdistan. Kurdistan traditionally has been the breadbasket of Iraq providing wheat, vegetables, fruit, olives, olive oil and so on but through Saddam Husseinís brutality not only against the people of Iraq but also against the environment, the agriculture industry in Kurdistan was destroyed and what we want to do is to revive that and weíre looking for partners, American partners if possible, to help us revive and improve the agriculture industry.

Rob: Okay. Can you describe for me what the conditions are like economically and socially in Iraq, I suppose the Kurdistan region specifically, but Iraq as a whole, how are things? Are they better than they were before Saddam was toppled, are they worse, are getting better? What is going on basically?

Bayan: Itís very difficult to give an overall view of the whole economy in Iraq because the economy varies locally from region to region, from city to city depending on the level of insurgency, the level of terrorist attacks so there are some areas in Iraq where frankly there is no economy but then there are other parts of Iraq where people are going about their business and entrepreneurs are back. People are starting to rebuild their lives and rebuild their businesses. I think the best example of that is the Kurdistan region where there is a revival of the market if you like and we believe that Kurdistan is the commercial gateway to the rest of the Iraq. We can be the model and the stepping stone for businesses that can start in the Kurdistan region and then once the rest of Iraq is stable can expand south.

Rob: Great. Thank you. Clearly you are a very independent, very accomplished woman, long career, a lot of accomplishments in your career but in much of the Arab world and Iraq specifically I may be talking naively here because Iím obviously an American and donít really know as much as I should about Arab culture but in a lot of places it seems like women are oppressed to varying degrees and arenít always given a lot of opportunities to succeed in things like business and politics, etc. Do you see that? What is your feeling on this first of all as a woman who has accomplished a lot in her life and do you think there is a future for women to come be less oppressed in Iraq?

Bayan: Well first of all thank you very much for your very kind compliments. I think like every woman I would want other women to succeed. I think itís very important that in Iraq we have role models. I think that is really what we lack in Iraq. Generally there arenít that many women who have succeeded. You know Saddam Hussein didnít really believe in promoting anyoneís rights except his own and those who supported him so I think your assessment of women in the Middle East is generally right but of course there are exceptions. I think in the Kurdistan region weíre more open. We have a more open attitude towards women and there are women in Parliament. There are 25% of the members of the Kurdistan Parliament who are women. We have ministers in our Cabinet who are women and we have some women who are engaged in business, in the business community but you know, you have to remember that even Kurdistan region is part of the Middle East so we have to contend with a patriarchal male-dominated culture but in Kurdistan region I am confident that things are good today and theyíll get much better even for women. In the rest of Iraq itís really again, different area by area and some areas the Islamic fundamentalists have the upper hand and theyíre very negative on womenís freedom. They have a very, in my view, a very blinkered attitude but then there are other parts of Iraq where things are okay so itís different region by region.

Rob: Do you think these regions where they have the blinkered attitude as you called it, do you think there is hope for these regions? Do you see any hope there?


Bayan: I think there is hope in that our hope is that Iraq will be democratic. Itís a long a difficult struggle but itís well worth it and once you have democracy then things like womenís rights and the rights of minorities, the right to have freedom of expression, all of these things are part of that. Already in Iraq according to the laws, rules of Iraq or the laws of Iraq 25% of the members of Parliament in Baghdad have to be women. This is something that we never had in the past in Iraq so already weíre making progress.

Rob: What is your opinion of the invasion of Iraq? Do you think it was justified?

Bayan: Yes, absolutely it was justified. I think you have to remember what life was like under Saddam Hussein. He was a brutal dictator. He controlled Iraq through cruelty and violence. He had children spying on their parents, reporting if their parents ever said anything negative about the government, reporting on their neighbors. He had a campaign of death against the Kurdish people. About 200,000 people disappeared in that campaign and now weíre finding the mass graves so we know where those people ended up. He used chemical weapons against people of Kurdistan. In one attack 5,000 Kurds were killed in the town of ---- so this was Iraq under Saddam Hussein so of course it was a liberation. It is a liberation and thatís actually why Iím here in the United States. Iím here to thank the people of America for liberating Iraq and for giving us our first real opportunity to have democracy in our country.

Rob: What do you think the opinions of your fellow Iraqis are as to all the changes that have taken place in their country? Obviously there have been some landmark elections. There have been some other really stunning changes since Saddam fell. Are the people happy about the changes? Are they thinking it should have gone in a different direction? Whatís the opinion on the ground?

Bayan: The opinion is that everybody is happy that Saddam Hussein is gone. There is no doubt about that. I think what people are unhappy about is that life isnít quite how they expected it, that there is this insurgency, that there are these terrorist attacks. People havenít expected that and thatís what makes life very, very difficult for people in Iraq but are we happy that we were liberated? Of course we are. Who wants to live with a dictator like Saddam Hussein, who Iím very glad to say today is behind bars.

Rob: Great. What are the benefits to the people of Iraq and I guess Kurds specifically from the topping of Saddam Hussein and I mean obviously we have generalities like there is no more dictatorship, no more children reporting on their parents but I mean is there anything else? I mean what has happened since Saddam was toppled that really has been great?

Bayan: Well I can tell you about the Kurdistan region because thatís the area that I know best and thatís the area where Kurdistan Development Corporation focuses on. Even though we had stress in amount of autonomy even while Saddam was in power because America and Britain had established a no fly zone over the Kurdistan region so Saddam wasnít able to attack us directly, his tanks were only a few miles outside of the Kurdish region right until 2003 when we had the liberation of Iraq so even though we had a certain amount of self-government the fact that he was so close and the fact that he controlled how the Oil for Food program money from the United Nations was spent, meant that there was only so much that we could do as a government in the Kurdistan region. Now that heís gone, any money that does come into the Kurdistan region that is in the hands of the Kurdistan regional government can be spent the way we want and we are spending it on building roads, building schools, improving the health care and the education system for our people, signing contracts with oil companies so that oil, you know Kurdistan has plentiful oil and gas and Saddam Hussein never developed these oil and gas fields because he hated the Kurds so much he feared that if he developed the oil and gas in their region they would do something with it so the area was left underdeveloped. Now for the first time we are able to develop this and weíre able to hopefully, once the revenues come in, use those revenues from the oil fields for the people of Kurdistan and the people of the rest of Iraq as well.

Rob: Someone suggested that a solution to the strife in Iraq, the violence in Iraq may be to divide the country up into three independent nations, one for Sunnis, one for Shiites and one for Kurds. Have you heard about this idea and what are your thoughts on it?

Bayan: Yes I hear this idea all the time. I can understand why people say that. Iraq is made up of two main nationalities, Kurds and Arabs and while the vast majority of Iraqis are Muslim they fall into two main sects, the Shiite and the Sunni sects and as we can see right now there are some problems among these groups but in my view a lot of these problems are cemented by outside organizations, outside groups that are using Iraq as the theater of war in this war on terror so I donít know if dividing Iraq into three is really the answer. In our view the answer is to have a federal and democratic system for Iraq so that Iraq will stay as one country but within that country you would have certain regions, perhaps up to five regions, each region being self-governing so for example you would have the Kurdistan region, the Sunni region, two regions for the Shiite population and Baghdad as the capital being one region by itself so these five regions would live democratically within a federal Iraq. I think thatís really the solution for the future of Iraq.

Rob: Okay. Do you feel that the American presence in Iraq causes any of the violence or the problems and if so, do you think that if American troops were to withdraw right away, say immediately, as immediate as you can get 100,000+ troops out of Iraq, do you think that would help solve problems?

Bayan: It wouldnít solve the problem. It would in fact make things far worse. Today we need Americaís help to help our economy get back on its own two feet, to help our military train and to strengthen. If America were to withdraw today or in the very near future it would be a catastrophe for Iraq and all those lives that have been lost and sacrificed to liberate Iraq and to fight terrorism and to bring about democracy in Iraq, all of that would have been in vain and I donít think thatís what anybody wants.

Rob: One of the reasons that our president, President Bush, gave us for invading Iraq was that Iraq was a threat through the sponsorship of terrorism. Do you feel that the invasion of Iraq and the toppling of Saddam Hussein has made American and other places in the world safer from terrorism?

Bayan: It has. If America wasnít fighting terrorism in Iraq right now I think America would be fighting terrorism here in the United States and itís in Americaís interests to have peace and stability in Iraq. Thatís why itís very important that American and British and other coalition troops stay in Iraq so that we bring about stability, democracy, you know having a stable, prosperous, democratic Iraq will mean that Americans will be more secure in their own homes in America.

Rob: Many here in America are critical of the war in Iraq. They say the war has created more terrorists than it has defeated and has made the Middle East region less stable. How do you respond to those criticisms?

Bayan: Well, you know, the attack on the Twin Towers, you know, September 11th, that happened in 2001. The war in Iraq happened in 2003 so I donít know how anyone can say that toppling Saddam Hussein brought about terrorism against America or in the world. These groups were plotting against American and plotting against the democratic world long before President Bush decided to invade Iraq or liberate Iraq so to me it doesnít make sense, that argument.

Rob: Knowing what you know now, if we could go back in time to before the invasion of Iraq and you personally could offer President Bush as to how to handle the invasion and the subsequent occupation afterwards, what would you tell him?

Bayan: I would say that itís going to be a very difficult and long process to bring about stability and democracy in Iraq but itís well worth the struggle and itís well worth keeping the long-term vision in your head so that you can focus on that and just bear through the difficult times. I think really thatís really a very important message for the people of America. I hear all the time that some sections of Americans fighting, not all but some people in America want the troops back straight away. I think that would be a catastrophe for Iraq and it would be a huge mistake for America as well.

Rob: Youíre a former journalist. What is your opinion of the way the American press has covered the events in Iraq? Are Americans being kept well informed as to what is going on in Iraq? Are we getting the whole story here at home?

Bayan: Well, I am a former journalist as you said. I can understand why the reporters and the news editors want the news to be about the latest killings, the bombs and so on and I, personally I think itís right that as human beings we should still be shocked when there are deaths, violent deaths. I think the day we stop reporting violent deaths will be a very sad day for us a human beings because itíll mean that we donít care anymore but what frustrates me is that while that picture of Iraq is given, we donít get the full picture. We donít get the balancing side, which is to say that in Kurdistan region for example, and other regions in Iraq as well, there is stability, it is peaceful, and people are able to go about their daily lives freely without being hindered. I think thatís the frustration, that weíre not getting the full picture. Weíre getting an accurate picture but not the whole picture.

Rob: Okay. Recently the government in Turkey has made some noises about invading northern Iraq to combat Kurdish rebels. What is your opinion of this situation? Here in America there hasnít really been a lot of coverage.

Bayan: Well, the Kurdistan regional government has protected against Turkey actually shelling some of the border regions and attacking civilian areas in Kurdistan region. Weíve protected through the foreign ministry in Baghdad against this and weíve also been very clear in saying that we donít support the PKK, which, we donít give any direct or proactive support to the PKK, which is what Turkey claims. There are some PKK fighters or members in a rugged and mountainous part of Iraqi Kurdistan, which is actually on the border of Turkey. Theyíre not doing anything there. Theyíre just there. But Turkey, you know, shelling civilian areas and weíre protected very strongly against that. Turkey has to remember this Kurdistan region in Iraq is part of Iraq. Iraq is a sovereign state. Turkey has no right to invade that part of Iraq.

Rob: Okay. Again, going back to here in America, many public opinion polls seem to reflect sagging support among Americans for the war in Iraq. If you could talk to these Americans who are wondering whether or not the war in Iraq was a good idea, what would you say to them?

Bayan: What I would say to them is they should remember what life was like for ordinary Iraqis under Saddam Hussein. It was a life full of unspeakable cruelty and violence. There was no freedom of expression. There was no freedom of movement. I think also they should remember that the world had a war against terrorism before the liberation of Iraq so before Americaís engagement with Iraq in 2003 so to say that the terrorism around world now is because America went to Iraq I think thatís a mistake. That is a misunderstanding of the facts.

Rob: Great. Well thatís all the questions I have for you. Is there anything else youíd like to say for my readers?

Bayan: Well, what I would like to talk about, if I may, is our advertising campaign, which is called The Other Iraq. As I explained just now I think the reporting on Iraq covers the violence and whatís going wrong in Iraq. While thatís true, there is another side to the story. There is the other Iraq. Parts of Iraq that are prosperous, that are stable, that are peaceful and that is exemplified by the Kurdistan region in Iraq so we have launched this advertising campaign called The Other Iraq in which we thank the people of America and we also explain a little bit about our region and how weíre building a democracy and weíre looking to partners to help us redevelop our region.

Rob: Is there anyplace they can go to get more information about that?

Bayan: Yes, we have a website which is theotheriraq.com. That will give them, if they go to theotheriraq.com website they can download the advertisements. There is also a short documentary that they can download to learn about the history of Kurdistan and then the potential for investment in Kurdistan.

Rob: Well great. Thank you very much for making time to answer my questions.

Bayan: Youíre welcome. Thank you very much, Rob.

[link to sayanythingblog.com]
Left wing, Right wing...We're both flying in the wrong direction.

Disclaimer:
All information posted and shared through this site by "Afraid Of the Dark" (and all persons associated with this SN) is fictional and for entertainment purposes only. The original poster will not be responsible for any re-representation, reproduction, and outside use. In other words, if you are a gov't official and you are worried that I am a terrorist...I am not. I am simply writing fiction to entertain the community of GLP. Have a nice day.
Afraid Of the Dark (OP)

User ID: 109815
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09/15/2006 02:14 AM
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Re: IRAQIS ARE REALLY HAPPY SEE VIDEO!!!!!
bump Last time I promise :-)
Left wing, Right wing...We're both flying in the wrong direction.

Disclaimer:
All information posted and shared through this site by "Afraid Of the Dark" (and all persons associated with this SN) is fictional and for entertainment purposes only. The original poster will not be responsible for any re-representation, reproduction, and outside use. In other words, if you are a gov't official and you are worried that I am a terrorist...I am not. I am simply writing fiction to entertain the community of GLP. Have a nice day.

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