Saturday, July 19, 2008

Iraqi Prime Minister Backs Obama's 16 Month Timetable for Withdrawal

Iraq's Prime Minister reportedly told a German magazine that he backs Senator Barack Obama's 16 month timetable for withdrawing United States combat forces from Iraq. Here is a quote from the Reuters article about his comments:

"U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama talks about 16 months. That, we think, would be the right timeframe for a withdrawal, with the possibility of slight changes."

Now why would he agree with Obama? First of all, he wants to pressure the Bush Administration into signing an agreement governing the role of American troops that is favorable to Iraq. The last thing that the Bush Administration wants is the Iraqi PM publicly supporting Obama's positions.

Second, he wants American troops out of Iraq because the Iraq public wants them out of Iraq. Since he has elections this year, he needs to get the public on his side.

Third, he may not trust McCain to actually pull American combat troops out of Iraq. The last thing that Iraq wants is the US to have the capability to take over its oil fields using American troops stationed in Iraq.

Whatever his reasons, though, this puts McCain in a very difficult position. Now it looks like McCain and Bush want us to stay indefinitely while the American and Iraqi publics want us out.

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