Iraqi PM Maliki denies that Iraq is on the verge of civil war; he even sounds optimistic:
On a day in which at least 46 people were killed, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said he did not foresee a civil war in Iraq and that violence in his country was abating.Carl Levin clearly has a superior vantage point (can you see Iraq better from Michigan or Washington?) as he categorically disagrees with the Iraqi PM:
"In Iraq, we'll never be in civil war," al-Maliki told CNN's "Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer." ...
Asked when coalition troops might leave, the Iraqi leader was equivocal.
"It could be a year or less, or a few months," he said. "This has to do with the -- with our success of the democratic -- or the political process in Iraq, and to have the security agencies to protect this process."
Sen. Carl Levin, a Michigan Democrat, disagreed with al-Maliki's assessment of the state of affairs in Iraq, saying the country was "on the verge of civil war right now," if not already involved in one.
Good thing we have folks like Levin to remind us that no matter what happens in Iraq it is a quagmire, we're losing, and its all going to end in tears. Just you watch.
From the Cap'n:
One event that CNN reported gives more hope. A Sunni legislator has emerged alive after two months in captivity. Tayseer al-Mashhadani, one of Iraq's female politicians, disappeared in early July, but no one claimed responsibility for her abduction or offered any demands for her release. No one is quite sure who kidnapped her or why she was let go, even though the kidnapping was well-planned.
Another hopeful sign is the recent conference Maliki hosted to promote national unity. Over 400 politicians and tribal leaders met with the Iraqi PM to plan for domestic peace. The conference attendees agreed to help foster understanding, and Maliki told them to urge their followers to think of themselves as Iraqis first and above all. If that message can take hold, then Maliki could avoid the civil war he insists will never happen. We hope time proves him correct.
Take that, Carl.