As I mentioned from Day One of the American invasion of Iraq, it is doomed. I said then and I repeat it now: 1) We will be seen as just another, in a long line, of colonialist powers in the Middle East; 2) You cannot foist democracy on a nation or culture that has no history or likeness of it, especially something as culturally insensitive as AMERICAN democracy; 3) A civil war is inevitable in a place that has no history of united nationhood like Iraq; there will be at least 3 splinter groups that will strongly resist nationhood. Iraq is not a nation, and in the true sense of the word, never was a nation.
To quote an intellectual seer from Alaska: "You can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig."
The recent election in Iraq, if that is what you want to call it, was loaded with fraud and manipulation. What is emerging is a mess of major proportions which break down in splintered form. Among the splinters are: Shiites, Sunnis, Kurds, Sadr followers, al-Malaki followers, Iran sympathizers, Baathists, democrats, former exiles who came back to Iraq with their own brand of democracy, drug barons, oil barons, tribal leaders, puppets of NATO and America, militarists, religious zealots of various stripes, Christians, followers of the B'hai faith, city dwellers, rural/farm dwellers, merchants, ad infinitum.
Far too many Iraqi citizens are simply waiting for clean water and electricity to return to how they had it during Saddam's rule. Yes, Saddam was a horrible tyrant. But there are and have been many horrible tyrants around the world, many of whom the U.S. supported [Somoza, Batista, Marcos, and regimes in Colombia, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, South Africa, etc.]. In the limited aptitude world of George Bush and Ronald Reagan it was easy to call on the American people to follow their conservative leaders into oblivion. The world is laden with remnants of American adventurism as with the Contras in Nicaragua, in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, etc. Words and comic book rhetoric may seem wonderful, but the real world, unfortunately, acts out and treats us in --well-- the real world. As we celebrate the "elections" in Iraq, the splinter groups are already planning out their sabotage and how to wreck the American-led government there. Iraq is in for some very bad days and years and decades. What will emerge is a nation or series of nations that do not look anything like Bush and his henchmen envisioned it.