Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Iraqi PM: US Now Making Things Worse in Iraq

Recommended at Daily Kos. Front paged at Booman Tribune

As if were even possible to have things get worse in Iraq. The "renewed" Baghdad offensive hasn't helped matters in the city, with troops being moved from other areas where they are likely needed. And despite the fact that Bush is still burying his head in the Crawford brush, er, sand about the civil war boiling over, things are getting worse just when you thought they couldn't get much worse.

Now, Bush and the neocon war criminals have pissed off Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki with their latest actions, which led to another incredibly bloody day in Iraq.

According to al-Maliki, a US-led attack in Sadr City which led to three deaths, including a woman and a child, has made matters worse and is a setback to any movement towards a peaceful resolution and reconciliation:

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's criticism followed a pre-dawn air and ground attack on an area of Sadr City, stronghold of radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and his Mahdi Army militia.

Police said three people, including a woman and a child, were killed in the raid, which the U.S. command said was aimed at "individuals involved in punishment and torture cell activities."


Al-Maliki, a Shiite, said he was "very angered and pained" by the operation, warning that it could undermine his efforts toward national reconciliation.

"Reconciliation cannot go hand in hand with operations that violate the rights of citizens this way," al-Maliki said in a statement on government television. "This operation used weapons that are unreasonable to detain someone - like using planes."

He apologized to the Iraqi people for the operation and said "this won't happen again."

Heckuva job you are doing, Bush.

With General Casey and General Abizaid making statements about the growing civil war in Iraq, as well as Chuck Hagel speaking out about the situation in Iraq, calling it a hopeless, winless situation, it is long past time to start thinking of a way to get our soldiers home safely as soon as possible. Especially now that they are pretty much playing referee in 125 degree heat with a Commander-in-Chief who thinks that he should get props for cutting his vacation short (mind you, that is just the time in Crawford as he will be spending much of the month on vacation, just not necessarily playing cowboy). And a Secretary of Defense who is so bad that perpetual triangulator Hillary Clinton even called for his resignation. Hell, the illegal invasion was so poorly planned that Bush didn't even know that there was a difference between Sunnis and Shiites.

So now it leaves a situation where every day brings more violence, even in Baghdad, which is supposed to be the "safe area":

More than 30 people were killed or found dead Monday, including 10 paramilitary commandos slain when a suicide driver detonated a truck at the regional headquarters of the Shiite-led Interior Ministry police in a mostly Sunni city north of Baghdad.

Of course, nobody from the US leadership wants to hear what the Iraqis want to say. We have already been asked to leave three times. And like it or not, this mess that Bush and the neocons created in Iraq doesn't mean that they can impose their will on Iraqis while dismissing torture, top level mismanagement and the theft of billions of dollars through no bid contracts.

Or with white phosphorus.

And like it or not, even though Bush likes to talk about "the sacrifices we are making to bring democracy to Iraq", democracies don't always turn out to put the puppets people in power that you want in power. So in order to save face and actually do the right thing by the very troops that were illegally sent overseas to fight for a lie and greed, you have to accept the mess that you made.

Birth pangs, right Condi?

Friction between the U.S. military and the Iraqi government emerged as the U.S. military kicks off a military operation to secure Baghdad streets after a surge in Sunni-Shiite violence - much of it blamed on al-Sadr's militia.

Al-Sadr has emerged as a major figure in the majority Shiite community and a pillar of support for al-Maliki. The prime minister's remarks underscore the difficulties facing the Americans in bringing order to Baghdad at a time when Iraqis are increasingly resentful of the presence of foreign troops.

U.S. officials are equally frustrated by the slow pace of reconciliation and what they feel is the reluctance of politicians to reach consensus among Iraq's religious and ethnic groups on the future of the nation.

After the Sadr City attack, President Jalal Talabani, a Kurd, met with the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. George W. Casey Jr., to discuss security operations in Baghdad. Talabani said he told Casey "it is in no one's interest to have a confrontation" with al-Sadr's movement.


But the public position taken by al-Maliki and Talabani signaled serious differences between Iraqi politicians and both U.S. and Iraqi military officials on how to restore order and deal with armed groups, many of which have links to political parties.

The horrific "planning" (if you can even call it that) has gotten us, our troops, as well as the Iraqis to this point. Things are not getting better (as holy Joe would have you think). They are getting worse by the day. Prominent Republicans are calling for an exit strategy. Our troops had secured Baghdad - a few years ago. Saddam was captured. Regime change occurred. And now what? A mess everywhere you look. An overstretched army. Outdated equipment. Not enough armor.

There is no mission now other than to be a target. Or to take part in a civil war that we have no business getting in the middle of. The Prime Minister has said that we are making things worse. Keeping our troops there is a great disservice to them.

Bring them home. Now.

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