Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Good News From Iraq, by Arthur Chr- Check That - by Kofi Annan(??!!)

An upbeat appraisal on Iraq's prospects today from an unlikely source: the embattled U.N. Secretary General himself. Annan focuses on the political situation and enlarges on the point that success lacks the visibility of failure:
In a media-hungry age, visibility is often regarded as proof of success. But this does not necessarily hold true in Iraq. Even when, as with last week's agreement, the results of our efforts are easily seen by all, the efforts themselves must be undertaken quietly and away from the cameras.
In reality, though, Kofi's piece is yet another sales pitch for the services of the U.N.; if your knowledge of Iraq came from this article, you would never know that the United States, Britain, Australia, and our other brave allies were even involved; indeed, you would think the entire operation was a U.N. affair:
In aid of the transition, the United Nations is at work, both inside and outside the country, to support donor coordination, capacity-building of Iraqi ministries and civil society organizations, and delivery of basic services. Reconstruction of schools, water-treatment and waste-treatment plants, power plants and transmission lines, food assistance to children, mine clearing and aid to hundreds of thousands of returning refugees and internally displaced persons - all of these activities occur every day in Iraq under U.N. leadership.
Well, yes, under U.N. leadership, and under the protection of coalition forces who are literally dying to bring a better future to the Iraqis. Never mind, though; for once I'm grateful for Annan's publicity stunts; anything that takes the focus off of the insurgents is a good thing.

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