Monday, September 15, 2008

Politics of Dishonor

Obama tried to stall Iraq troop withdrawal

While campaigning in public for a speedy withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, Sen. Barack Obama has tried in private to persuade Iraqi leaders to delay an agreement on a draw-down of the American military presence.

According to Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, Obama made his demand for delay a key theme of his discussions with Iraqi leaders in Baghdad in July.

"He asked why we were not prepared to delay an agreement until after the US elections and the formation of a new administration in Washington," Zebari said in an interview.

Obama insisted that Congress should be involved in negotiations on the status of US troops - and that it was in the interests of both sides not to have an agreement negotiated by the Bush administration in its "state of weakness and political confusion."


Though Obama claims the US presence is "illegal," he suddenly remembered that Americans troops were in Iraq within the legal framework of a UN mandate. His advice was that, rather than reach an accord with the "weakened Bush administration," Iraq should seek an extension of the UN mandate.

9/16: Confirmed

"The Obama campaign issued an angry denial to a report yesterday that the Democratic presidential candidate privately urged Iraqi leaders to delay U.S. troop withdrawals, but the statement essentially confirmed the story."

"But in the same statement, Morigi said Obama had told the Iraqis they should not rush through a 'Strategic Framework Agreement' governing the future of U.S. troops until after President Bush leaves office,"

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