This morning, I shook the purple stained hand of a dear friend. The skeptics, and the ignorant, can spin the turnout and result all they want, I know the truth. I saw it in Junior’s eyes when he held up his finger. I didn’t ask him how he voted, that doesn’t matter. I think that’s what the naysayers don’t get. The outcome doesn’t matter because the process was successful, therefore whatever the outcome, freedom triumphed.
My job on Saturday was to handle any detainees picked up in our sector, questioning them and making recommendations regarding what to do with them. Take a guess at how many people I questioned. Not one. I spent the day doing redeployment planning and talking to soldiers coming off of patrols, who all reported happy crowds waving purple fingers at the passing Soldiers. No violence. No IED’s. No detainees. It was so quiet in our sector that the Brigade commander personally escorted the family of an Iraqi baby with a broken leg to a hospital, because he had nothing else going on. It was actually boring. Boring is good. My seat as a witness to history was a quiet room, watching AFN News and waiting for something to happen. Nothing happened, and that is News. Nothing happened!
Something I haven’t seen mentioned in press reports of the election is the fact that no American troops were guarding any of the polling sites. Security was handled entirely by the Iraqi Army and Police. We had patrols sweeping the MSR’s, but no one was even allowed within sight of a polling place. It was the Iraqi’s election, not ours.
It was a success. I know, I was there.