Saturday, July 28, 2007

Maliki Wants Petraeus Relieved

He's the US Army's counterinsurgency guru, General David Petraeus. He's the guy George w. Bush is counting on to make the "surge" work, to save Bush from the ignomy of defeat. But the very leader Petraeus is supposed to help, Iraqi president Nouri al Maliki, wants the general to go.

The Telegraph reports that Maliki has begged Bush to recall Petraeus:

One Iraqi source said Mr Maliki used a video conference with Mr Bush to call for the general's signature strategy to be scrapped. "He told Bush that if Petraeus continues, he would arm Shia militias," said the official. "Bush told Maliki to calm down."

At another meeting with Gen Petraeus, Mr Maliki said: "I can't deal with you any more. I will ask for someone else to replace you."

Gen Petraeus admitted that the relationship was stormy, saying: "We have not pulled punches with each other."

President Bush's support for Mr Maliki is deeply controversial within the US government because of the Iraqi's ties to Shia militias responsible for some of the worst sectarian violence.

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