Undaunted by a series of attacks at polls that killed at least 38 people, 60 percent of Iraqi voters turned out for the country's parliamentary elections.
Most of the violence occurred around the capital city of Baghdad and U.S. military officials said that many of the explosions were caused by bombs made out of plastic bottles.
The outcome of the Iraq elections will decide the government that will be solely responsible for running the country once U.S. troops withdraw in 2011.
"This day has been a triumph of reason over confrontation and violence. Iraqis are making history," said Ad Melkert, United Nations representative in Iraq.
"I think it was really a very good day for Iraqi democracy. And I believe it will be -- it will be a real foundation point, a real new beginning for a U.S. relationship with Iraq that we hope will stretch decades to come." - Christopher Hill, U.S. ambassador to Iraq
"This day has been a triumph of reason over confrontation and violence. Iraqis are making history." - Ad Melkert, United Nations representative in Iraq
1. Why do countries hold elections?
2. Who might be against free elections in Iraq?
3. How might violence and the threat of violence affect an election?
1. According to the video report, why is this election important to Iraq? Why is the next government so crucial?
2. Why might it be difficult to hold elections in a country that is unstable like Iraq?
3. Are you surprised that voter turnout was so high considering that violence was a possibility? Why or why not?
4. Why might democracy be difficult for Iraqis? What factors need to be in place in order for a country to hold free and fair elections?
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