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Most Iraqis Oppose Troops' Presence
Yahoo News/AP
By WILL LESTER, Associated Press Writer
December 12, 2005

WASHINGTON - Most Iraqis disapprove of the presence of U.S. forces in their country, yet they are optimistic about Iraq's future and their own personal lives, according to a new poll.

More than two-thirds of those surveyed oppose the presence of troops from the United States and its coalition partners and less than half, 44 percent, say their country is better off now than it was before the war, according to an ABC News poll conducted with Time magazine and other media partners.

But Iraqis are surprisingly upbeat on many fronts, the poll suggests.

Three-quarters say they are confident about the parliamentary elections scheduled for this week. More than two-thirds expect things in their country to get better in the coming months.

Attitudes about Iraq's future were sharply different in the Sunni provinces and other parts of Iraq, however. Only a third in the Sunni regions were optimistic about their country's future. Shiites, who with the Kurds dominate the current parliament, had a much more positive view than the Sunnis of their own personal safety and whether their own lives are going well.

A majority of both the Sunni and Shiite population say they favor a unified country, however.

In other poll findings:

_Two-thirds express confidence in the Iraqi army and in police.

_Half now say the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq was wrong, up from 39 percent in February 2004.

_More than six in 10 say they feel safe in their neighborhoods, up from 40 percent in June 2004.

_Six in 10 say local security is good, up from half in February 2004.

But the national concern mentioned most often is security, named by 57 percent.

A fourth of those surveyed, 26 percent, say U.S. forces should leave now, and another 19 percent say troops should leave after those chosen in this week's election take office. The other half say U.S. troops should stay until security is restored, 31 percent, until Iraqi forces can operate independently, 16 percent, or longer, 5 percent.

The poll was conducted by Oxford Research International face-to-face with 1,711 Iraqis age 15 and over from Oct. 8 to Nov. 22. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

Commentary:
Bush said we'd leave Iraq if they asked us to leave. The polls say ‘get the hell out,' yet we stay. How much more evidence do we need to prove Bush lied to us again? Supporters of Bush's illegal war now have to deal with a number of serious issues; first, the war was unjust because it was based on lies, guesses and known falsehoods. Second, the war was illegal because Iraq was never a threat to our national security. Third, the US used chemical weapons (weapons we called immoral) in Iraq (napalm and white phosphorous). Fifth, the excuses for war have changed faster than the seasons, and six, the Iraqi's want us to leave.

The only people who still support this war are wing nuts, Limbaugh and Fox fans. If they truly supported the war (and none of them do) they demand congress raise their taxes to pay for the war. But instead of paying for war they say they support, the GOP is cutting taxes by almost $100 billion (and passing the debt from both to the next generation).

While the rest of us have moved on, the GOP is still bogged down in a quagmire of its own making. At the heart of this debate is one undeniable fact. History will always say war supporters were wrong.

Being on the right side of history has its advantage. In fact I'd like to see someone in the GOP be right just once in my lifetime. Recall that there wasn't a single conservative pundit, conservative member of congress or conservative in the Bush White House that was on the right side of history when it came to WMD and war or surpluses and tax cuts.

Put simple, anyone who votes for a republican is voting for failure. Rewarding failure is a uniquely conservative trait.