We all knew that the left would be a bit upset once a deal was made to stay in Iraq indefinitely, as a partner, and as we do still in Japan and Germany some 60 years after the war:
Iraq’s government, seeking protection against foreign threats and internal coups, will offer the U.S. a long-term troop presence in Iraq in return for U.S. security guarantees as part of a strategic partnership, two Iraqi officials said Monday.
The proposal, described to The Associated Press by two senior Iraqi officials familiar with the issue, is one of the first indications that the United States and Iraq are beginning to explore what their relationship might look like once the U.S. significantly draws down its troop presence.
In Washington, President Bush’s adviser on the Iraqi war, Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute, confirmed the proposal, calling it “a set of principles from which to begin formal negotiations.”
As part of the package, the Iraqis want an end to the current U.N.-mandated multinational forces mission, and also an end to all U.N.-ordered restrictions on Iraq’s sovereignty.
In a televised address Monday, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said his government will ask the U.N. to renew the mandate for the multinational force for one final time, with its authorization to end in 2008. He insisted that the U.N. remove all restrictions on Iraqi sovereignty.~~~
The two senior Iraqi officials said Iraqi authorities had discussed the broad outlines of the proposal with U.S. military and diplomatic representatives. The Americans appeared generally favorable subject to negotiations on the details, which include preferential treatment for American investments, according to the Iraqi officials involved in the discussions.
The two Iraqi officials, who are from two different political parties, spoke on condition of anonymity because the subject is sensitive. Members of parliament were briefed on the plan during a three-hour closed-door meeting Sunday, during which lawmakers loyal to radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr objected to the formula.
Preferential treatment for U.S. investors could provide a huge windfall if Iraq can achieve enough stability to exploit its vast oil resources. Such a deal would also enable the United States to maintain leverage against Iranian expansion at a time of growing fears about Tehran’s nuclear aspirations.~~~
When asked about the plan, U.S. Embassy spokeswoman Mirembe Nantongo noted that Iraqi officials had expressed a desire for a strategic partnership with the U.S. in a political declaration in August and an end to the U.N.-mandated force.
“Thereafter then, the question becomes one of bilateral relationships between Iraq and the countries of the multinational forces,” she said. “At that point we need to be considering long-term bilateral relationships and we’re following the Iraqi thinking on this one and we agree with their thinking on this and we’ll be looking at setting up a long-term partnership with different aspects to it, political, economic, security and so forth.”
She said any detailed discussion of bases and investment preferences was “way, way, way ahead of where we are at the moment.”
The Iraqi officials said that under the proposed formula, Iraq would get full responsibility for internal security and U.S. troops would relocate to bases outside the cities. Iraqi officials foresee a long-term presence of about 50,000 U.S. troops, down from the current figure of more than 160,000.
But the left will scream about something or another anyways. If every single soldier had been sent back to the US they would have said that there were secret deals going on to ensure we are pulling the strings, because we are the puppetmasters you see? Now when news comes that the Iraqi’s want us around as partners for security, the left are wailing such sillyness as “staying was the plan all along.”
Get it? We went in for oil you see…..that’s why we have such cheap gas now.
Bet that it may we still have 37,000 troops in South Korea for exactly the same reasons that the Iraqi’s want us to stay in Iraq. A tripwire against further aggression.
Whether the future aggressor is North Korea, China or some other rogue country that isn’t on the radar yet, countries want insurance. And most feel that taking out that insurance with the United States is their best bet. Hell, Germany no longer has fears of a USSR attack but we’re still there. Why? Because you never know when your gonna need military support. And did you know that we have security relationships with over 100 countries worldwide? No outcry from the left on those arrangements tho.
The key word here is that this will now be a voluntary partnership. If the elected leaders of Iraq decide to kick us out after 2008, then we’re kicked out, as we were in Panama, Philippines, and France.
As far as the preferential economic access given to the US goes I see no reason why this deal, given voluntarilly once again, should not be presented. The US has paid the most for Iraq to succeed, with blood and money. Europe, which will surely be a bit upset over this preferential treatment, paid very little.
Now, the key question here is in 2009 we will have a new President. The moonbats will demand a complete and total withdrawal, as they have from the first days of the war up to the present, will the next President comply or act as a responsible world leader should?
But hey, maybe we can finally get some of that cheap oil?
Get this headline from a lefty site:
War Czar: Permanent Iraq Bases Won’t Require Senate Ratification
To their credit they paste the full quote from the General about this fact:
Q General, will the White House seek any congressional input on this?
GENERAL LUTE: In the course of negotiations like this, it’s not —
it is typical that there will be a dialogue between congressional
leaders at the negotiating table, which will be run out of the
Department of State. We don’t anticipate now that these negotiations
will lead to the status of a formal treaty which would then bring us to
formal negotiations or formal inputs from the Congress.
Q Is the purpose of avoiding the treaty avoiding congressional input?
GENERAL LUTE: No, as I said, we have about a hundred agreements
similar to the one envisioned for the U.S. and Iraq already in place,
and the vast majority of those are below the level of a treaty.
Again, no outcry about the one hundred similar agreements that were put in place without Senate ratification. Shocker!
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