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Iraqis Hear Dean Scream, Demand Return To Dictatorship
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FALLUJAH, Iraq - Already a hotbed of resistance, Fallujah has now become embroiled in a protest to drive America, its allies, and its politics from Iraq. "We have seen your 'democracy', and we do not wish it," said one man, holding an Arabic sign. "Your discussions in Iowa, old women and others, standing and walking to mark their allegiances. Buying and trading allegiances. And now your Howard Dean screams at your people. No, we do not want this."

After months of unrest, the Iraqi people have begun to develop a longing for the promised peace of democracy. But with better access to mass media, they are increasingly unsure if peace and democracy are as tightly coupled as they have been led to believe. Challenged one woman, "We have been told of this Chad that is hung after an election. He is counted, and recounted, by both sides, until judges say he cannot be counted anymore. This is democracy?".

"The Iraqis lack an education in democratic civics, they don't have the vocabulary that you and I take for granted," said L. Paul Bremer, Civilian Administrator in Iraq, "When they see these things on CNN, they don't have the context to understand them. What's a caucus? What's a primary? It's all new, and it's confusing."

"There is no amount of 'democratic civics' that prepares one for the 'Dean Scream'," said John Mearsheimer, Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago. "There are lines that should not be crossed by a man in the public eye, particularly one seeking a position of trust. The Iraqis quite naturally assume that what they see is normal, when in fact a series of extremely abnormal affairs have hit politics in recent years."

Other groups within Iraq, particularly Baghdad residents, do not share Fallujah's disdain for democracy. "We want elections," said one merchant, "We want representation. We do not want another Saddam. When Saddam screamed, no one made fun for fear of death. When your Dean screams, he becomes a laughing stock. He even laughs with us. This is what we want."
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