I thought that Bush's call for January elections in Iraq, and lately his insistence that the date not be moved back on account of the violence, was because of his firm commitment to a democratic rule in the country. But no, he (probably Rove and Wolfowitz or somebody) has a more devious purpose. The sooner the Bushies can claim the election to be a done deal, the sooner they can claim that the US occupation is truly legitimate because it's at the behest of an elected government. And make no mistake, the US will be invited to stay and enforce "peace," because of the genius of the Bush plan. An "election" in January 2005 will just be another rubber-stamp, confirming in power those who favor the US presence because, like the interim government, the assembly will contain largely representatives of the status quo--Shias and Kurds--who've fared relatively well since the invasion.
There's this prospect in the long term, however. The arab nationalism that's for decades been at the root of unrest throughout the Middle East (even we support it, in theory, calling it "self-determination") will eventually call for the ouster of the American presence, at which time, Look out. The region will explode in violence, as factions battle for control of Iraq and, likely, other nations. And the strongest factions, and most highly motivated, will be those who resisted the occupation in the first place.