Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Sustained U.S. Presence Critical to Security, Iraqi Spokesman Says

While this looks good on the surface, all you have to do is peel the onion to get your eyes to burn. There may be some good news here on the slide.
Despite a desire for U.S. forces to ultimately leave Iraq, Iraqi leaders recognize the need for international support until their military is capable of operating independently, the Iraqi government’s official spokesman said today.

“The fight is beyond the capacity of the Iraqi troops,” Ali Aldabbagh told “bloggers” and online journalists during a conference call today.
[...]
“We do need a regional effort,” he added, but until that coalesces, he said, the presence of the U.S. military is crucial.

On the subject of regional cooperation, Aldabbagh said current efforts by the United States to engage Iran in talks on Iraq are a step in the right direction. Dialogue with Iran will benefit the United States, Iran, Iraq and the entire region, he said.

The history of conflict between the U.S. and Iran “makes Iran more powerful,” he noted. “(The) conflict policy with Iran, it didn’t get us any positive things. We have to try another way of dealing with Iran.”

Iraq must develop ties to a country with which it shares a border over 900 miles long, Aldabbagh said. “Do we need to have a good relation(ship) with Iran? Definitely, they are our neighbors.”

By the same token, he said, the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki must engage all of the country’s political factions, including that of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. [Continue reading.]
I just pray we're not building them up to take us down...

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