Yesterday it was announced that George Bush has unilaterally decided that the United States will have what appears to be a permanent presence in Iraq.
As explained by General Douglas Lute, Assistant to the President for Iraq and Afghanistan:
Today's declaration outlines the main parts of what we expect that emerging agreement to contain. There should be a political-diplomatic segment, there will be a segment dealing with economic affairs, and then a security segment.
Today's agreement is not binding, but rather it's a mutual statement of intent that will be used to frame our formal negotiations in the course of the upcoming year.
Do you remember what George Bush said when he announced his temporary "surge" of troops?
The most urgent priority for success in Iraq is security...
To empower local leaders, Iraqis plan to hold provincial elections later this year. And to allow more Iraqis to re-enter their nation's political life, the government will reform de-Baathification laws, and establish a fair process for considering amendments to Iraq's constitution. [...]
To show that it is committed to delivering a better life, the Iraqi government will spend $10 billion of its own money on reconstruction and infrastructure projects that will create new jobs. [...]
We will use America's full diplomatic resources to rally support for Iraq from nations throughout the Middle East.
Bush started with security, political, economic and diplomatic goals, and now he has security, political, economic and diplomatic goals. The only difference? In January our commitment was, "not open-ended," and in November the long-term agreement, "is not binding." How's that for progress?
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