The upsurge of violence in Iraq is being countered by coalition and Iraqi security. U.S. Army General George Casey says that over the next year and a half he anticipates Iraqis "progressing to a point where they can take on the security responsibilities for the country, with very little coalition support."
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice says, "When Iraqis are able to secure themselves and to use their democratic institutions. . . .to work on their differences by means of politics not violence, that will be a very successful Iraq":
"Most Iraqis want what all people want. They want freedom from coercion and oppression, safety from violence and injustice, opportunities for a better life for themselves and for their children. They want a future of peace and moderation for their country, as do the leaders they freely elected in December, who are now serving at great personal risk in Iraq's national unity government."
Ms. Rice says that the extremists regard democracy as a threat to their "ideology of sectarian hatred":
"These terrorists and these militias resort to unthinkable acts of brutality to drag the country into civil strife and to destroy the hopes of their fellow Iraqis. They target innocent civilians making a religious pilgrimage. They murder people with a certain first name, because it signifies a sectarian difference. And they lay bombs on soccer fields to murder young children, because games like soccer are deemed 'idolatrous'".
Today, says Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Iraqis are "undergoing very great sacrifice[s] in order to try to build a unified Iraq."
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.