Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Obama Tried to Delay Iraq-US Troop Agreements

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Why isn't Obama denying Amir Taheri's charges?
He admited to it in June to MSNBC!

[NOTE: The New York Post's Amir Taheri, in "OBAMA TRIED TO STALL GIS' IRAQ WITHDRAWAL", "discussed how Barack Obama, during his July trip, had asked Iraqi leaders not to finalize an agreement vital to the future of US forces in Iraq - and how the effect of such a delay would be to postpone the departure of the US from Iraq beyond the time Obama himself calls for."]

We've discovered an MSNBC article which directly contradicts Obama's defense of his negotiations with the Iraq government.

Taheri layed out the Obama spin in today's followup to his Monday article:
The Obama campaign has objected [to my assertions]. While its statement says my article was "filled with distortions," the rebuttal actually centers on a technical point: the differences between two Iraqi-US accords under negotiation - the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA, to set rules governing US military personnel in Iraq) and the Strategic Framework Agreement (SFA, to settle the legal basis for the US military presence in Iraq in the months and years ahead).

The Obama camp says I confused the two. It continues: "On the Status of Forces Agreement, Sen. Obama has always said he hoped that the US and Iraq would complete it - but if they did not, the option of extending the UN mandate should be considered.

"As to the Strategic Framework Agreement, Sen. Obama has consistently said that any security arrangements that outlast this administration should have the backing of the US Congress - especially given the fact that the Iraqi parliament will have the opportunity to vote on it."

If there is any confusion, it's in Obama's position - for the two agreements are interlinked: You can't have any US military presence under one agreement without having settled the other accord. (Thus, in US-Iraqi talks, the aim is a comprehensive agreement that covers both SOFA and SFA.)
Unfortinately for Barack Obama, he's already on the record as having said that his discussion with Zebari was about both the SOFA and SFA. This from a June article from MSNBC:
He said he told Zebari that negotiations for a Status of Forces agreement or strategic framework agreement between the two countries should be done in the open and with Congress's authorization and that it was important that that there be strong bipartisan support for any agreement so that it can be sustained through a future administration. He argued it would make sense to hold off on such negotiations until the next administration.

"My concern is that the Bush administration--in a weakened state politically--ends up trying to rush an agreement that in some ways might be binding to the next administration, whether it was my administration or Sen. McCain's administration," Obama said. "The foreign minister agreed that the next administration should not be bound by an agreement that's currently made."
We've got Obama dead to rights on this. Start the investigation!

by rizzuto
image: dbkp file
Source: Why isn't Obama denying Taheri's charges? He admited to it in June to MSNBC!

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