Disturbing, Hassan writes Iraqis abroad cannot vote in the upcoming constitution referendum.
KurdMedia headlined the same thing a month ago:
Kurds and Iraqis abroad cannot vote on the constitution
KurdishMedia, UK - 15 Sep 2005
... KurdishMedia.com) 15 September 2005: The Kurds and Iraqis abroad cannot vote in the referendum to decide on the draft of the Iraqi constitution, which will be ...
Only now I just keep getting a "Bad Request" message and can't read the article. Scouring for other mentions but not finding any. Why isn't this out there?
And infuriatingly (well alright, annoyingly, I don't get furious very often) when I take up the last google resort to find anything via blog all I come up with are links referencing blogs that I've already read and this site. Which is flattering but it suggests there is not much information about this and people are reliant on too few sources because it's getting more difficult to find out what is going on inside Iraq. Or more to the point, what is going on about being an Iraqi abroad.
Basically there's a great big Iraq media hole right now. Iraq does not have a critical mass of bloggers and journo's are either embedded and controlled or bailing out because independent reporting is becoming too dangerous for foreigners with cameras and without local knowledge smarts. The remaining dribble of info is dependent on press releases from government organisations. And a handful of blogs.
And still no more info on whether or not Iraqis outside Iraq can vote during the referendum.
Raed mentions other referendum peculiarities, salam has shutted up again and not posted for weeks and river almost writes what I'm working up to; there is an interest void and these three alone can't be expected to cover each and every detail that nobody else does. I half hoped I might find something new at Iraq The Model and didn't. What they have posted is fairly much a summary of what mainstream news outlets are reporting; last minute deals, Sunni boycott, ratification looks to go through. Piling publishes a comprehensive summary with question and answer section but it is unsurprisingly Kurdocentric, which is fine, it just means that I'm not finding the expat type info I'm looking for. You might think I could find it on Fayrouz's blog, but bless her soul, she is selflessly embracing the neglected gay and lesbian community instead.
And why does it worry me that Kurds and Iraqis outside Iraq may not be legible to vote in the referendum? Because it means that those who have left are deliberately cut off from the decision making process and prospects for their return diminish. There isn't even an option to boycott the vote, the decision has already been made by someone else. People tend to leave warzones because it's not safe and they are unhappy with the situation. It's a subtle form of protest not uncommon under unpleasant regimes past and present. Now why would a demographic like that be excluded hmm. Braindrain, exodus, exile, call it what you will, it doesn't seem all that different to what was happening during the Saddam UN sanction years.
Not looking especially grand from where I stand.
So, two questions.
1. Can or cannot Iraqis outside Iraq vote in the referendum?
2. If not, why?
Update: TAI wrote a big long post about it, if you can patiently wade your way through the stuff about hoaxs he'll get to the point eventually (he has kindly recreated the moment below in comments). But why is nobody else publishing this. What is going on? Not in the msm anywhere, you'd think it'd be prime op-ed fodder but no, dead silencio.