Are the "insurgents" losing the war in Iraq? … &printer=1
I couldn’t find the more usual topic title of “is Bush losing”, so I decided to start my own. It’s more fitting anyway.

[quote]Iraqi insurgents urge Sunnis to vote, warn Zarqawi

Sun Dec 11, 6:01 AM ET

Saddam Hussein loyalists who violently opposed January elections have made an about-face as Thursday’s polls near, urging fellow Sunni Arabs to vote and warning al Qaeda militants not to attack.

In a move unthinkable in the bloody run-up to the last election, guerrillas in the western insurgent heartland of Anbar province say they are even prepared to protect voting stations from fighters loyal to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, leader of al Qaeda in Iraq.

Graffiti calling for holy war is now hard to find.

Instead, election campaign posters dominate buildings in the rebel strongholds of Ramadi and nearby Falluja, where Sunnis staged a boycott or were too scared to vote last time around.

“We want to see a nationalist government that will have a balance of interests. So our Sunni brothers will be safe when they vote,” said Falluja resident Ali Mahmoud, a former army officer and rocket specialist under Saddam’s Baath party.

“Sunnis should vote to make political gains. We have sent leaflets telling al Qaeda that they will face us if they attack voters.”

In Falluja, renowned as Iraq’s “City of Mosques,” Sunni Muslim spiritual leaders made clear there would be no repeat of the boycott of January’s election which left their minority angrily marginalised.

Fiery speeches delivered in Friday prayers have been toned down, with increasing calls for Sunnis to vote.

The influential Sunni Muslim Scholars Association urged their large community to boycott the “illegal” polls in January.

Nearly one year on, the group has so far been officially neutral but some of its members have called participation in the polls a “religious duty.”

But Saddam loyalists have turned against Zarqawi, a Jordanian militant whose fighters travel to Iraq from across the Arab world to blow themselves up in a bid to spark sectarian civil war.

“Zarqawi is an American, Israeli and Iranian agent who is trying to keep our country unstable so that the Sunnis will keep facing occupation,” said a Baathist insurgent leader who would give his name only as Abu Abdullah.[/quote]
Given the glass-half-empty viewpoint of the anti-Bush faction here, I am going to bet that they start posting that this means Iraq is turning into a theocracy. :unamused: :raspberry:

Woah either this is excellent news for everyone, or we are being duped with a Stephen Glass extravaganza.

It’s possible that both foreign terrorists and the U.S. are losing out in public opinion across the Middle East in 2005:

Table 9. Change in Attitude Towards USA – 2005

Egypt: worse, 84%
Saudi Arabia: worse, 82%
Jordan: worse, 62%
Lebanon: worse, 49%

Table 10: Most Important Factor in Determining Attitude Towards US – 2005

Egypt: war in Iraq and U.S. treatment of Arabs & Muslims: 85%
Saudi Arabia: war in Iraq and U.S. treatment of Arabs & Muslims: 81%
Jordan: war in Iraq and U.S. treatment of Arabs & Muslims: 76%
Lebanon: war in Iraq and U.S. treatment of Arabs & Muslims: 56%

Attitudes of Arabs: 2005