The Prime Minister of Iraq, Nuri al-Maliki, has more or less endorsed Senator Obama’s timetable for leaving Iraq in Germany’s Spiegel newspaper:
“SPIEGEL: Would you hazard a prediction as to when most of the US troops will finally leave Iraq?
Maliki: As soon as possible, as far as we’re concerned. U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama talks about 16 months. That, we think, would be the right timeframe for a withdrawal, with the possibility of slight changes.
SPIEGEL: Is this an endorsement for the US presidential election in November? Does Obama, who has no military background, ultimately have a better understanding of Iraq than war hero John McCain?
Maliki: Those who operate on the premise of short time periods in Iraq today are being more realistic. Artificially prolonging the tenure of US troops in Iraq would cause problems. Of course, this is by no means an election endorsement. Who they choose as their president is the Americans’ business. But it’s the business of Iraqis to say what they want. And that’s where the people and the government are in general agreement: The tenure of the coalition troops in Iraq should be limited.“
This is very Good News for the USA. I hope, hope, hope all the war proponents in this country are listening.
There’s one more quote from the Prime Minister that I believe sums the whole thing up perfectly:
The Americans have found it difficult to agree on a concrete timetable for the exit because it seems like an admission of defeat to them. But it isn’t.
UPDATE: Also, OOPS.
UPDATE II: A good synopsis of some brilliant analysis of this development at Andrew Sullivan’s blog, the Daily Dish.
I’m just sayin’…