Friday, June 06, 2008

Forever and a day

The good news:
Iraq Lawmakers Want US Forces Out As Part of Deal

A majority of the Iraqi parliament has written to Congress rejecting a long-term security deal with Washington if it is not linked to a requirement that U.S. forces leave, a U.S. lawmaker said on Wednesday.
“What are the threats that require U.S. forces to be there?” asked Nadeem Al-Jaberi, a co-founder of the al-Fadhila Shi’ite political party, speaking through a translator.
A Sunni Iraqi lawmaker, Khalaf Al-Ulayyan, founder of the National Dialogue Council, said bilateral talks on a long-term security deal should be shelved until American troops leave — and until there is a new government in Washington.
A senior U.S. official said in Baghdad earlier this week that the United States still hopes to reach a new security agreement with Iraq by July,
Now the bad news:
Revealed: Secret Plan to Keep Iraq Under US Control
Bush wants 50 military bases, control of Iraqi airspace and legal immunity for all American soldiers and contractors
The terms of the impending deal, details of which have been leaked to The Independent, are likely to have an explosive political effect in Iraq. Iraqi officials fear that the accord, under which US troops would occupy permanent bases, conduct military operations, arrest Iraqis and enjoy immunity from Iraqi law, will destabilise Iraq’s position in the Middle East and lay the basis for unending conflict in their country.

But the accord also threatens to provoke a political crisis in the US. President Bush wants to push it through by the end of next month so he can declare a military victory and claim his 2003 invasion has been vindicated. But by perpetuating the US presence in Iraq, the long-term settlement would undercut pledges by the Democratic presidential nominee, Barack Obama, to withdraw US troops if he is elected president in November.

The timing of the agreement would also boost the Republican candidate, John McCain
And the worse news:
US issues threat to Iraq's $50bn foreign reserves in military deal

The US is holding hostage some $50bn (£25bn) of Iraq's money in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to pressure the Iraqi government into signing an agreement seen by many Iraqis as prolonging the US occupation indefinitely, according to information leaked to The Independent.

US negotiators are using the existence of $20bn in outstanding court judgments against Iraq in the US, to pressure their Iraqi counterparts into accepting the terms of the military deal, details of which were reported for the first time in this newspaper yesterday.
BTW, the "$20bn in outstanding court judgments against Iraq" is part of the exact same money that
the Bush "administration lawyers have argued that Iraqi assets frozen in bank accounts in the United States are needed for Iraqi reconstruction

In a related case, a federal judge in New York ruled in September that the families of people killed in the Sept. 11 attacks could not claim any part of about $1.7 billion in frozen Iraqi assets in the United States.

The judge noted that President Bush had signed an executive order in March, on the eve of the American invasion of Iraq, that confiscated Iraqi assets and converted them into assets of the United States government. "
Does anyone else remember when Bush said:
"We are there at the invitation of the Iraqi government. This is a sovereign nation. Twelve million people went to the polls to approve a constitution. It's their government's choice. If they were to say, leave, we would leave."
Bush previously said it was 'up to the Iraqi people.' (I couldn't find the link to that. The first commenter who does gets a free year's supply of SteveAudio and VidiotSpeak!)

It's a fact that the majority of Iraqis have wanted us out at least since 2004.

So apparently Shi’ite's and Sunni's do agree on some things. And what they and 68% of Americans agree on is that US troops should not be in Iraq.

McCain and Bush think we should be there as long as Bush/McCain want us to be there, which is either 50 years, 100 years, or 10,000 years. It just depends on which day you ask.

As much as McCain tries to distance himself from Bush, including hiding joint fundraising events away from the press and the people, the fact is McCain has voted with Bush 95% to 100% of the time in the past 2 years.

Cross posted at VidiotSpeak