The following is an editorial reflecting the views of the United States government:
Earlier this month, gunmen assassinated Ali Al-Haidri, the governor of Baghdad. U.S. State Department spokesman Adam Ereli says Mr. Al-Haidri's murder is "a great loss":
"Those who killed Ali Al-Haidri should be seen for what they are, which are murders and enemies of the people of Iraq who want democracy, who want to vote, who want to choose their leaders and who want a free Iraq."
Mr. Ereli says that terrorist attacks, like the murder of Baghdad's governor, will not stop the electoral process in Iraq:
"It is...yet another sign that there are elements in Iraq that will stop at nothing to turn the clock back and to impede the progress of their country and to try to frustrate the will of the vast majority of Iraqis who want to vote, who want to choose their own leaders and who want to build a new country based on the free expression of views and participation in political life. That's what Mr. Al-Haidri gave his life for."
The United States is committed to helping the Iraqi people realize a better future. White House spokesman Scott McClellan says the Iraqi people deserve "a future that stands in stark contrast to the brutal regime of Saddam Hussein":
"There is a clear choice facing the Iraqi people, facing the region, and facing the international community. We stand on the side of democracy and freedom and peace, or we can stand on the side of terrorists and tyranny and oppression. I think the international community is joining with the Iraqi people to help them move forward toward a free and democratic and peaceful future."
The Iraqi people deserve the chance to vote for their government.