Iraq, The Vote: 'There's Going to Be a Bloodbath'

J$P Instant Transcript! Steve Harrigan on Fox & Friends. Updated!

From Fox & Friends, January 28 2005:

STEVE HARRIGAN [FOX NEWS]: I think the biggest thing that we're missing is the fact that there's ordinary Iraqi people. There's guys with families, schoolteachers, factory workers, normal people with wives, husbands, kids, who are scared, and who want the Americans to stay there, take care of them, make sure this goes off. And for the bombs to stop exploding on our seat. We see the knuckle heads dancing around the burned out Humvee, or we see the guys in masks about to cut somebody's throat. But most of the 25,000,000 people over there are not a whole lot different from me and you. We don't tell that story.

MIKE JERRICK [FOX NEWS]: Most. What do you think's going to happen Sunday?

HARRIGAN: I think there's going to be a bloodbath on Sunday.


HARRIGAN: All over the place, especially in Baghdad and a few other cities--Mosul. I mean, what would you do if you had to walk down the street to vote in a school, and everyone sent out notes saying we're going to blow you up. If we see ink on your finger we're going to kill you, we're going to kill your family. We're asking a lot of the Iraqi people to go out there and vote. They're putting their lives on the line to go out and vote.

KILMEADE: In how many cities?

HARRIGAN: You're going to play that game of we've got 10 provinces safe and 4 provinces there's dangers. About half the country's in big trouble, half the country's all right. All the desert provinces, where nobody lives, they're in great shape.


E.D. HILL [FOX NEWS]: Well that's interesting, because I don't think that we do quite fully appreciate, we talk about it, but it's very hard to put yourself in that position where you get a note on your doorstep saying, if you go out and vote we will come back and we will kill you and your family. And so we are asking a lot. But at the same time, we believe, or we're being led to believe, that they can see that this is necessary. It's a necessary risk in the growth of their own nation for democracy. Do they see it that way?

HARRIGAN: I think it comes down to each individual. Are you ready to do that? Are you ready to stand up? No one likes to get pushed around. They don't like US soldiers there, and they don't like to be pushed around by terrorists either, telling them what to do or not to vote or sticking up signs. But for a woman with kids to go out there and vote this weekend, it's going to be a real inner choice. I don't know what's going to happen. I've been there two years; I don't know what they're going to do. I hear 80% are going to vote. I think that's nonsense. Where do these polls come from? You can't go walk around the streets. How do you take an accurate poll? Nobody's got phones, you know. Don't believe nonsense on either side.

KILMEADE: Why do you think the Shia have taken a vow not to react militarily when they're hit in major Shia cities?

HARRIGAN: They're showing tremendous patience and discipline. They're going to come out and vote in Basra and other cities big time, and their slate is going to win.

KILMEADE: And do you think that will empower their army and motivate their future leaders in the military, if in all they feel, that government, I elected that government.

HARRIGAN: You know, you're leading me along like an attorney. You're trying to get an optimistic statement about things. Just go ahead and make your point.

KILMEADE: I just said, I'm asking you a question.

HARRIGAN: It's going to be dangerous, even if they did win.

KILMEADE: They're not going to walk away forever. They're not going to turn the other cheek forever.


KILMEADE: So when they stop turning the other cheek, will that make things better?

HARRIGAN: I think the real question is, can you go from being pressed down by a killer dictator for 30 years to democracy in a year? I don't think you can. I think it might take a generation. I think there's going to be a civil war between Sunnis and Shiites. I think the only thing that holds that place together is Islam. We're going to see a radical, hardline Islamist come to power over there. But I've been wrong about everything since I've been back, so take that with a grain of salt....

Update: Steve Harrigan has second thoughts.

posted: Sat - January 29, 2005 at 01:42 PM       j$p  send