."The U.S. military has warned Iraq that it will shut down military operations and other vital services throughout the country on Jan. 1 if the Iraqi government doesn't agree to a new agreement on the status of U.S. forces or a renewed United Nations mandate for the American mission in Iraq.
Many Iraqi politicians view the move as akin to political blackmail, a top Iraqi official told McClatchy Sunday.
In addition to halting all military actions, U.S. forces would cease activities that support Iraq’s economy, educational sector and other areas _ "everything" _ said Tariq al Hashimi, the country’s Sunni Muslim vice president. "I didn’t know the Americans are rendering such wide-scale services.""U.S. threatens to halt services to Iraq without troop accord October 26, 2008.Comment from JJ:
"Looks like the US is throwing a temper tantrum. These guys need to grow up and go home. Or go home and grow up."
ـ27 نشرين الآول 2008
."The Roman historian Tacitus famously put the following lines in the mouth of a British chieftain opposed to imperial Rome: "They have plundered the world, stripping naked the land in their hunger? they are driven by greed, if their enemy be rich; by ambition, if poor? They ravage, they slaughter, they seize by false pretenses, and all of this they hail as the construction of empire. And when in their wake nothing remains but a desert, they call that peace."
Or, in the case of the Bush administration, post-surge "success." Today, however, success in Iraq seems as elusive as ever for the President. The Iraqi cabinet is now refusing, without further amendment, to pass on to Parliament the status of forces agreement for stationing US troops in the country that it's taken so many months for American and Iraqi negotiators to sort out. Key objections, as Juan Cole points out at his Informed Comment blog, have come from the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, which is [Prime Minister Nouri] al-Maliki's chief political partner, the support of which he would need to get the draft through parliament." That party, Cole adds tellingly, "is close to Tehran, which objects to the agreement." The Iranian veto? Hmmm?
Among Iraqis, according to the Dreyfuss Report, only the Kurds, whose territories house no significant US forces, remain unequivocally in favor of the agreement as written. Frustrated American officials, including Ambassador Ryan Crocker ("Without legal authority to operate, we do not operate? That means no security operations, no logistics, no training, no support for Iraqis on the borders, no nothing?"), Secretary of Defense Robert Gates ("Without a new legal agreement,'we basically stop doing anything' in the country?"), and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Mike Mullen ("We are clearly running out of time?") are huffing and puffing, and threatening – if the agreement is not passed as is – to blow the house down."What the Good News from Iraq Really Means October 24, 2008 .
The "Green Zone"ers