Thursday, August 28, 2008

Maliki picks a date with destiny

Generations of Iraqi leaders have succumbed to the "Iraqi curse" - dying violent deaths while in office or soon after leaving it. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's date with destiny could well be determined by his present fixation on another date — when United States troops should permanently leave his country.

This week, Maliki reiterated that he had agreed with the United States that all 145,000 American troops would withdraw from Iraq by the end of 2010. The negotiations are for a Status of Forces Agreement to govern relations between American troops and the Iraqis after the United Nations mandate expires this December.

Maliki said there would be no security agreement with the US without an unconditional timetable for withdrawal, . . .

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