U.S. withdrawal is the solution to end instability in Iraq

U.S. withdrawal is the solution to end instability in Iraq
September 13th, 2006  
Team Infidel

Topic: U.S. withdrawal is the solution to end instability in Iraq

U.S. withdrawal is the solution to end instability in Iraq
Media: The Associated Press
Date: 13 September 2006

TEHRAN, Iran_Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khameni told the visiting
Iraqi prime minister in talks Wednesday that the way to end instability in
Iraq was for U.S. forces to withdraw, Iran's state-run television reported.

Nouri al-Maliki was making his first visit to Iran since he came to office
in May, looking to a close ally of his Shiite-led government for help in
calming the violence tearing apart Iraq and in developing Iraq's troubled
oil industry.

In the latest sign of increasing cooperation, the two countries have reached
a deal for developing joint oil fields that straddle their borders, and
eventually Iraq will send crude to refineries in Iran for processing, Iraq's
Oil Ministry said Wednesday.

Iran is also helping Iraq in its chronic shortages of petroleum products.
Under a deal reached last month, Iraq will sell crude to its neighbor, which
in return will sell back kerosene, and an Iranian-Turkish company will
deliver gasoline from Turkey to Iraq across Iranian territory, Iraqi Oil
Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad told The Associated Press.

The deals and al-Maliki's visit reflect the steadily strengthening ties
between the U.S.-backed Iraqi government and Iran, a bitter enemy of the
United States.

Al-Maliki's reception has been a warm one in Iran, where he spent part of
his yearslong exile from Iraq during Saddam Hussein's rule. Khamenei _ who
holds the final word in all political matters in Iran _ said Iran considers
it an "obligation" to support Iraq's post-Saddam government.

But Khamenei made clear Iran wants to see U.S. troops leave Iraq, which he
blamed in part for the turmoil plaguing the country.

"Part of (Iraq's) sufferings have been due to the actions of the former
regime and part is due to the presence of occupiers in Iraq," Khamenei told
al-Maliki, according to the Iranian state news agency.

"We hope a day will come when the Iraqi people reach the stage they deserve
and that, by cutting the hands of the foreigners, its wealth will come to
serve the Iraqi people," Khamenei said.

While welcoming Saddam's ouster, Iran has sharply opposed the American
military presence in Iraq, leery of having U.S. troops on its doorstep.

However, Iran has benefited greatly from Saddam's fall, which eliminated one
of its greatest enemies and paved the way for the rise to power of Iraq's
Shiite Muslim majority, along with Shiite political parties with close ties
to Iran's leadership.

The United States has repeatedly accused Tehran of interfering in Iraqi
politics, harboring al-Qaida fugitives and allowing insurgents to cross the
porous 1,000-mile (1,609-kilometer) border. Iran denies the claims, but has
not ruled out the possibility that some infiltrators might have crossed its
border illegally.

In his visit, al-Maliki _ who met President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Tuesday _
asked Iran to take tougher measures to stop al-Qaida militants from entering
Iraq, according to Iraqi officials.

"Expansion of relations with friends and neighbors are the top priorities of
Iraq's foreign policy," al-Maliki told Khamenei, according to Iranian
state-run television.

The television also quoted al-Maliki as saying that instability was the
biggest challenge for the Iraq government which he blamed mainly on
supporters of Saddam.

Al-Maliki also met Ali Larijani, Iran's top nuclear negotiator and thanked
Iran for hosting Iraqi leaders opposed to Saddam's rule.

"Iraq is Iran's natural ally," state-run television quoted Larijani as
telling al-Maliki.

Despite its huge oil reserves, Iraq has been suffering under shortages of
fuel products because of the damage to the industry from insurgent attacks
and the turmoil in the country. It has also turned to Syria and other
countries for supplies.

Jihad, from the Iraqi Oil Ministry, said the two countries had agreed to
form commissions to define the reserves in joint oil fields that lie on both
sides of their border. They agreed in principle as well to lay a pipeline to
deliver crude from the Iraqi side of the joint fields to Iran for refining,
he said.
September 13th, 2006  
Chief Bones
This alliance doesn't spell out as being good for the possibility of having a democratic bastion in the Middle East vis-a-vis Iraq. So much for GW's 'spreading' democracy throughout the region. It appears that he has made another blunder as far as foreign policy is concerned.
September 13th, 2006  
Team Infidel
I have always said that democracy was the wrong word from the beginning. It should have been "self governing"... but what do I know?
U.S. withdrawal is the solution to end instability in Iraq

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