Tuesday, April 29, 2008

US embroiled in de-basing deal

The White House has been extremely reticent and defensive about the discussions, perhaps remembering past subterfuge of its own. And while there are no signs of panic - yet - negotiators are quite aware that critical details, leaked to opponents before the final signatures are affixed, potentially could scuttle months of maneuvering by the Bush administration on sensitive topics. Of these, the most politically sensitive issue is whether US bases being built in Iraq should be, or clearly already are, permanent. . . .

As part of the National Defense Authorization Act for the 2008 fiscal year, signed into law by Bush on January 28, Congress authorized army and air force military construction funding totaling US$425.7 million for three bases in Afghanistan and nearly $1.9 billion for 16 bases in Iraq.

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