Thursday, November 02, 2006

More real progress in Iraq

It was heartwarming to read in a NY Times article by Kirk Semple entitled "Iraqi Demands Pullback; U.S. Lifts Baghdad Cordon" that Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki had demanded the removal of American checkpoints from the streets of Baghdad on Tuesday. This is only a second instance of an Iraqi leader showing some real spine and suggesting that Iraqis really do understand the stakes. I don't know if this is really what President Bush had in mind when he talked about the U.S. standing down as the Iraqis stand up, but it will do. It's not enough, yet, but it is a good start.

It is now very possible that within merely a few months we could see a situation where Iraq "demands" that American forces evacuate Baghdad, or at least don't have a presence on the streets.

We will need to see a lot of little steps and some big ones as well in the coming months, but the name of the game will be building confidence that Iraq's national government is simultaneously willing to stand up for the various groups in Iraq as well as standing up against American attempts to keep the Iraqis as mere puppets for American foreign policy in the Middle East.

Go Iraq! Send the Americans packing... ASAP.

I only hope the Bush administration will recognize the deep wisdom of Iraq's moves and leave on good terms that will serve the long-term interests of both the U.S. and Iraq.

-- Jack Krupansky


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