Iraq's VP Says Training of Iraqi Troops Not Going as Bush Says
Right after President Bush goes on national television to give a speech saying how super things are going in training Iraqi troops to defend their own country, the Iraqi Vice President comes out and says, well, that's not exactly true.
The Vice President of Iraq, Ghazi al-Yawer, said today that there has been a big "setback" in the last six months of training Iraqi troops and that the forces that do exist seem far more interested in settling political scores than augmenting U.S. troops.
Al-Yawer, said he agrees that immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops would further destabilize the country because "there will be a huge vacuum," leaving Iraq in danger of falling into civil war.
But Al-Yawer directly went against President Bush's contention that the drive to train Iraqi security forces is gaining momentum and that local troops are becoming more capable of securing the country.
In addition, Al-Yawer said that the Shiite-dominated army is conducting raids against villages and towns in Sunni and mixed areas of Iraq, rather than targeting specific insurgents. "Saddam used to raid villages," using security forces, said Al-Yawer. "This is not the way to do it."
Well, this is kind of embarrassing, isn't it? I bet there's going to be a few awkward moments at the next Team Bush-Iraqi Government cocktail mixer.