Iraq Study Group co-chairmen former Secretary of State James Baker(L) and former Chairman of the House International Relations Committee Lee Hamilton conduct a news conference by the group on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Baker said there is “no magic formula” to solve Iraq’s problems, as he unveiled a report on the way forward in the war-torn country.
A call for President George W. Bush to reduce US support to Iraq if Baghdad fails to improve security drew a sour response from Iraqi politicians, who said Washington had an obligation to back their government.
“The US calls itself an occupying force in Iraq and, according to the Geneva Conventions, if you are an occupier then you are responsible for the country,” said parliamentarian Mahmud Othman, a Kurd.
“They have no right to to do this. This is unfair.”
Bassim Ridha, a top advisor to Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, said the White House has to support Baghdad “all the way”.
“If they do not support the government then it will look as if they do not do what they preach,” Ridha said. “We need their support to go forward.”
A high-level, bipartisan panel urged Bush Wednesday to act to halt a “grave and deteriorating” crisis in Iraq by holding talks with Iran and Syria and starting to withdraw US combat forces.
The report said Washington must step up action — including the threatened reduction of political, military and economic support — to make the Iraqi government improve security.
Haidar al-Abadi, a member of Maliki’s Dawa party and close associate to the prime minister, said most of the panel’s recommendations, including a dialogue with Iran and Syria and increased training for Iraqi security forces, had been expected.
But the threat to reduce support was new.
“We were told there would not be pressure as such,” said Abadi. “In our dialogue with the US administration, we said that we would work together.”
Well, there you have it.
The Iraq Study Group report is viewed as UNFAIR to our Iraq allies.
What the Iraqis are not saying but Flap will:
IRAQ STUDY GROUP REPORT = AMERICAN DEFEAT AND SURRENDER IN IRAQ
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