25 December 2005
Merry Christmas to all, including the men and women of the armed services of the USA and of all nations. May we all find the balance of individual liberty with strong communities based on free association; civil, family, and personal responsibilities; and traditions associated with human dignity.
This is it folks, this is what a peaceful, democratic, multi-ethnic and religiously-tolerant Iraq looks like. The Western media's myopic focus on Baghdad and Arab Iraq means it's missed a quarter of the story, the northern quarter, where five million people are building the Middle East's first indigenous democracy from scratch. Every day Kurds thank me, believing I represent all Americans. They thank me for freeing them from a murderous tyrant. They thank me for saving their lives and their families' lives. They tell me that they understand we went to war for many reasons, some quite bad. Still, they say, no American has died in vain here, for even if there were no weapons of mass destruction, even if Iraq had nothing to do with Sept. 11, there is at least one good reason to fight and die in Iraq.
In fact, there are five million.
Merry Christmas, America. Merry Christmas, Iraq.