Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Iraq Government “Impatiently Waiting” for US to Leave

Add the Iraqi government to the chorus of voices wanting the U.S. troops to get out of Iraq.

Iraq’s national security adviser said Tuesday that his government would not sign an agreement governing the future role of U.S. troops in Iraq unless it includes a timetable for their withdrawal.

The statement was the strongest demand yet by a senior Iraqi official for the two governments to set specific dates for the departure of U.S. forces. Speaking to reporters in the Shiite holy city of Najaf, National Security Adviser Mowaffak al-Rubaie said his government was “impatiently waiting” for the complete withdrawal of U.S. troops.

“There should not be any permanent bases in Iraq unless these bases are under Iraqi control,” Rubaie said, referring to negotiations over a bilateral agreement governing the future U.S. military role in Iraq. The agreement, if approved, would go into effect when a U.N. mandate expires in December.

“We would not accept any memorandum of understanding with [the U.S.] side that has no obvious and specific dates for the foreign troops’ withdrawal from Iraq,” Rubaie said.

One thing I can’t figure out is why this request isn’t being greeted as great news by the Bush administration and McCain campaign; obviously they were right and we were wrong — the Iraqi government is ready to take over. Isn’t that what we were fighting for?

Candidate McCain, though, told MSNBC yesterday that the call for a timetable from the Iraqi government has more to do with politics in Iraq and the upcoming elections rather there than a considered policy based on the conditions in the country. Imagine that; politics entering into the equation. Who could have imagined that?