Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Iraqis want a US withdrawal

Since Saturday, Iraqi leaders have been meeting in Cairo as part of an Arab League-sponsored reconciliation conference aimed at eventually producing peace in Iraq. While the meeting has at times been turbulent, agreement has finally been reached on a common statement showing the points of agreement between the Sunni, Shi'ite and Kurdish communities. A key part of that statement is that the occupation is a cause of violence and conflict and that therefore there should be a timetable for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq. The Iraqis aren't advocating immediate withdrawal - they want more time to train their own troops - but there is no question that they want the Americans gone. Meanwhile, President Bush is saying that setting a future deadline for a pullout would be "a recipe for disaster" and that US troops will "stay in the fight until we have achieved the victory [they] have fought and bled for". Perhaps he should be paying attention to the rest of the statement: in addition to calling for a timetable for withdrawal, the Iraqi representatives also agreed that resistance - though not the murder of civilians - "is a legitimate right for all people". Or, through the caveat, that it's OK for insurgents to kill US troops. When even America's allies think that, you'd think that it was time to leave, neh?


The "Iraqi leaders" you refer to aren't the only Iraqis with an opinion. I realise you're probably talking specifically about the Iraqis at the conference but your statement that "The Iraqis aren't advocating immediate withdrawal ..." is still a little misleading.

Posted by Anonymous : 11/22/2005 12:57:00 PM

The Guardian provides a bit of context -

"The U.S. administration has lobbied Iraq's Arab neighbors to support the conference, which is aimed at persuading Iraq's Sunni Arab minority to join the political process and find accommodation with the country's Shiite Muslims and Kurds, who have taken political control after decades domination by Saddam."

I didn't find anything in these articles that said killkng US troops was OK. But a relatively moot point since the resistance has been more intent on killing Iraqis.

There is not quite so much difference between the US and Iraqi leadership on the issue of withdrawal as you try to make out. Both are saying that withdrawal should take place once the Iraqi defense forces are capable of defending the deomcratic process.

Posted by Anonymous : 11/22/2005 02:26:00 PM