Reviving a Dead Horse
Nermeen Al-Mufti writes in Al-Ahram:
President Bush is due to present his final report on his new strategy in Iraq to Congress by 15 September. He had a tele-conference with Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki last week to discuss the latest security and political developments in Iraq. A statement by the prime minister’s office said that the two leaders agreed that the joint military operations launched by the Iraqis and the multinational forces have been a success.
Well-informed sources however said that President Galal Talabani and Vice-President Adel Al-Mahdi met Al-Maliki after that and relayed a further message from President Bush. In the message, the US president blamed the Iraqi prime minister for the current political crisis in the country, in particular the withdrawal of 12 ministers from his government. In his message to Al-Maliki, President Bush said that the US was more interested in supporting the political process in the country than in supporting the prime minister. Vice-President Tareq Al-Hashimi was not invited to the meeting “out of concern for Al-Maliki’s sensitivities,” the same sources added.