So says Greyhawk over at Mudville. Greyhawk has done several posts in the last couple of days regarding supposed tension between the US and the Iraqi government. He attributes much of the problem to bad reporting and thinks the disagreement has been overblown.
But enough of yesterday's news - on to Maliki's bombshell for today - in which he declares that he can get the job done sooner than the most optimistic U.S. timeline anyway:
Iraq's prime minister said on Thursday he could get violence under control in six months, half the time U.S. generals say they need, provided Washington gave him more weaponry and more say over his own forces.
"They think building Iraqi forces will need 12 to 18 months, for us to be in control of security," Maliki said, referring to remarks two days ago by U.S. commander General George Casey.
"We agree our forces need work but think that if, as we are asking, the rebuilding of our forces was in our own hands, then it would take not 12-18 months but six might be enough."
"I am now prime minister and overall commander of the armed forces yet I cannot move a single company without Coalition approval because of the U.N. mandate," Maliki said.
"I have to be careful fighting some militias and terrorists ... because they are better armed than the army and police," Maliki said. "The police are sharing rifles."
Asked what kind of Iraqi forces he wanted, Maliki said: "I'm not talking about modern tanks or modern warplanes and missiles ... I'm talking about having a well-trained army, swift and light on its feet and at the same time with medium weapons."
That kind of leadership is exactly what is needed in Iraq - I say we give him what he wants, get out of the way as much as possible, and see what happens in six months.
read it all.
I am not psychic nor am I a military expert, so I think I will just wait and see what happens, but I do think that after we have gone to all this trouble to establish a representative government in Iraq it would be a shame if we just said to hell with it, the Muslims are hopeless.
Raising the Bar
7 minutes ago