Will Iraq's Ship Sink?

This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

Tomorow is the big day in Iraq. An election that will send representatives to a real full-time Parliament. It's almost as if after 1,000 days of construction, something like a ship of state will be shoved off the dock and we will watch to see if it sinks or sails.

The American blood and money that has gone into building this ship — let alone the political capital spent by President Bush — is more than can be calculated. Will the continuing American presence there be a drag on this ship, or will all those American troops help Iraq avoid the shoals of the insurgency?

If democracy works there, if Iraq can become an agent of change and freedom, then President Bush will win a place in history. We can argue all day about how the war started and how it's been executed. The world, though, will be a better place if this ship doesn't run aground.
By Harry Smith