Saturday, February 07, 2009

US to be "much more aggressive" in Iraq as the troops withdraw ??

Before leaving for Munich, VP Joe Biden gave a little talk to Democrats "at a Virginia retreat", and the part about Iraq went like this, according to the AFP.
In a sometimes somber speech to Democratic members of the House of Representatives on a Virginia retreat, the vice president said last week's elections suggested progress was being made in Iraq, but more had to be done.

Biden said Iraq's leaders had not "gotten their political arrangements together yet."

"Our administration is going to have to be very deeply involved not only keeping the commitment that we've made drawing down our troops in an orderly fashion consistent with what we said," Biden warned.

From now on, Washington would have to be "much more aggressive ... forcing them to deal with those issues," Biden said.

The Obama administration has pledged to go ahead with plans to withdraw most combat troops from Iraq within 16 months, and to divert resources to Afghanistan and the fight against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda.
All of which is highlighted in a front-page summary by AlQuds alArabi this morning, unfortunately without any analysis what in particular he was talking about.

In the same piece, the London-based pan-Arab paper highlighted record January figures for Army suicides, also without comment.