Posted by: Lister | March 3, 2008

When will Bush announce a trip to Iraq?

Ahmadinejad has visited Iraq, and said some obvious things amounting to “Yankees go home!” The thing that catches my attention is:

Our correspondent says Mr Ahmadinejad’s visit could not contrast more strongly with those of Iraq’s only other presidential visitor since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, President Bush, whose trips have been unannounced, brief and confined to American military bases.

This is a clear sign that relations between Iran and the current Iraqi government are great. Some reports even have Ahmadinejad relying on Iraqi security, which is hard to believe. Which brings back my old question: why would Iran want to rock the boat in Iraq? They have more than they could have hoped for. The quicker things settle down, the sooner Iran can profit from its now friendly neighbour.

The WaPost reported Ahmadinejad’s visit on Feb 15th.

Ahmadinejad is scheduled to visit the southern Shiite holy cities of Karbala and Najaf, Dabbagh [Iraqi government spokesman] said. Among other issues, the two neighbors are slated to discuss joint projects, mostly along their 900-mile-long border, including electricity stations and oil fields, Dabbagh said.

Dabbagh said Iraq would not conduct its foreign relations in the shadow of the United States. “We are a sovereign country. Our good relationship with Iran will help everybody in the region,” he said.

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Responses

  1. From MSNBC:

    The two-day trip offered powerful political theater on Iran’s growing ties with its former enemy — with U.S. officials getting a front row seat.

    […] Iraqi officials laid out red carpets and military bands played for the hardline president — the first Iranian leader to visit Iraq. In front of live TV crews, Ahmadinejad held hands and exchanged kisses on the cheek with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, who fondly told him to call him “Uncle Jalal.”

    […] He even took a swipe at U.S. President Bush for making secret visits to the country he invaded.

    Unlike Bush’s trips to Iraq, Ahmadinejad announced his journey in advance, drove in a motorcade down Baghdad’s airport road — once known as “The Highway of Death” — spent the night and even traveled to a Shiite holy shrine in northern Baghdad, albeit under the cover of night.

    “The visits should be declared and open. And all those who come on stealth visits, we should ask them why they visit this country in a stealth manner?” Ahmadinejad said.

    […] The U.S. military did not provide security for him.


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