Saturday, October 09, 2004

Voting Ends Peacefully in Afghanistan

Voting ended peacefully in Afghanistan, with no violence. It had been feared that terrorists would try to disrupt the Democratic processby attacking poll goers. There was a snafu when the wrong ink was used in a small number of polling precincts, causing opponents of Hamid Karzai to claim fraud. But the international monitors said the problem did not warrant the recasting of votes.

Despite the claims of failure in Afghanistan by John Kerry, that country has just held the first election in its history.

It is a miraculous turnaround for a country that had been ravaged by decades of war. To that end there are severa; good articles about the election today.

The first is by Zalmay Khalilzad. Mr. Khalilzad is special presidential envoy and U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan. His article, A 5,000-Year First
Afghans vote today, and Americans should be proud
appears in the Wall Street Journal.

The second article, called The Afghan Miracle, is an editorial in the New York daily News. An excerpt:

As polling time neared, the naysayers were out in force. Not in Afghanistan. But here. They, and that includes John Kerry, lament the fact that much in Afghanistan is still broken and will not be fixed for a long time. Warlords abound, the opium and heroin trade flourishes, the Taliban salivate for a return to power, and Osama Bin Laden and his cohorts are probably within or near its borders - plotting.

To which the level-headed must answer: And so?

Democratic self-government is the Afghans' only hope for inching this beleaguered country toward the 21st century. Understanding the stakes only too well, Afghans approached the election with far more enthusiasm than most observers expected. May they vote in peace.

This picture is from Instapundit (I hope you don't mind, Glenn). It is a picture of Afghan men waiting in line to vote. The picture is powerful. American's should be proud today. We have led the world to free a people that have endured decades of war and oppression.