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8/10/03 - IRAQIS HELP THEMSELVES - 2003-08-11

Following the recent deaths of the sons of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, confidence is growing among Iraqis that neither Saddam nor his Baathist Party will ever return to power.

The U.S. recently approved a thirty-million dollar reward to the person who provided information about the whereabouts of Uday and Qusay Hussein. And, as U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said other Iraqis are following suit:

"As more Iraqis step forward with information and assistance, coalition forces have conducted scores of raids against the [Saddam Hussein regime] remnants that still exist in the country. Within recent weeks, coalition forces have captured literally many hundreds of individuals. They've now captured or killed thirty-eight of the top fifty-five most wanted."

Remnants of the Saddam Hussein regime continue to carry out attacks, but this has not slowed efforts to put Iraq on the path back to stability and self-government.

Universities and hospitals in Iraq are reopening. Iraq is returning to the world oil market. Iraqi police are being hired, and an Iraqi army is being formed. Most important, said Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, is the formation of the Iraq Governing Council:

"The twenty-five person council includes Sunni, Shia, Kurds, Assyrians, Turkmen, men, and women. It is broadly representative of the Iraqi population. Indeed, I would suspect that it is very likely the most representative body that Iraq has ever had."

Ultimate success in Iraq, said Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, will take time. But "each of these successes," he said, "is putting pressure on those who seek to disrupt Iraq's transition from tyranny to a free and civil society."