Fix Iraq to Fix the Region
A 'decent and stable' country could set an example
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 7, 2009 10:30 AM CDT
In this image made on Wednesday, May 27, 2009, US soldiers unload plywood in Camp Carver on the outskirts of Madain, about 15 miles southeast of Baghdad, Iraq.   (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
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(Newser) – Many in the Middle East demanded action after President Obama’s Cairo speech, but the action that’s crucial right now is the Iraq peace process, writes Thomas Friedman in the New York Times. Hillary Clinton must lead us in an effort to establish a “decent and stable political order” in Iraq—a democracy that could set an example for the rest of the region.

“When there is no model, it is hard for an idea to diffuse in a region,” says an expert, but Friedman suggests Iraq should be that model. There, we’ve been “clumsily midwifing something that the modern Arab world has never seen before—a horizontal dialogue between the constituent communities of an Arab state,” he writes. Meanwhile, “if Iraq unravels as we draw down, the Obama team will be blamed, and it will be a huge mess.”