Iraqi CP opens new office in Sadr City

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This is pretty impressive, and probably will not get reported in The New York Times or other commercial media.

Iraqi Letter reports:

A new office for the Iraqi Communist Party was opened in Al-Thawra City (Sadr City) in Baghdad on 5th December 2008. The ceremony, held in open air in Jamila district, was attended by a big gathering of party members and supporters, as well as a delegation from the party Central Committee. The president and members of the municipal council of Sadr City, and other guests were present.

Note: This vast very poor neighborhood was long known as 'Revolution (al-Thawra) City' until the Islamic Shiite upsurge after the U.S. toppled Saddam Hussein. Today, reports indicate the standing of religious parties has suffered as Iraqis are turned off by the sectarianism and violence.

Abdul Hussein al-Rubaei, representing the party district committee, stressed in his speech the political significance of opening the new party office in this toiling [working class] area. Comrade Izzet Abu-el-Timmen, member of the party Political Bureau, conveyed the greetings of the Central Committee, and reiterated the party's support for the population of the City and their demands to aleviate the injustive they had suffered under the former dictatorial regime. He also called upon them to participate actively in the forthcoming provincial elections and to give their support to the electoral list 'Madaniyoun' (No. 460) that represents the democratic forces.

The secular and democratic left in Iraq has wide and deep roots, and is vastly under-reported in U.S. commercial media and in the left. The provincial elections, currently set for Jan. 31, will show something about how the political trends are shaping up in Iraq. That's why there's been an upsurge of violence with various reactionary elements (right-wing Islamists, former Baathists, etc.) trying to intimidate or eliminate their opponents.