Iraq reconciliation conference

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For the past three days, leaders from Iraq's Shiite, Kurdish, and Sunni communities have been meeting in Cairo, Eqypt, as part of a "reconciliation conference" sponsored by the Arab League.  According to Voice of America , the conference was intended

"to bring different factions together, and start working toward a political deal than can end the violence." 

However, the result of the conference, as reported this morning by the Associated Press, was to call for a timetable for the withdrawal of allied forces and, more outrageously, to declare that Iraq's "opposition" had a "legitimate right" of "resistance."  While condemning attacks upon civilians, the conferees carefully made exceptions for attacks on foreign troops. 

In other words, the conferees declared that killing American soldiers was "legitimate."  In attendance were Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al—Jafari, who adamantly refused to permit former Baathists to participate in the conference, but who, apparently, did not object to the conferees' support for killing Americans.  It is too early to know all the details about this very important story, but it cannot be good news for President Bush —— or for the cause of freedom and democracy in Iraq —— that the very people we are trying to defend agreed to such a despicable position.

Steven M. Warshawsky   11 22 05

For the past three days, leaders from Iraq's Shiite, Kurdish, and Sunni communities have been meeting in Cairo, Eqypt, as part of a "reconciliation conference" sponsored by the Arab League.  According to Voice of America , the conference was intended

"to bring different factions together, and start working toward a political deal than can end the violence." 

However, the result of the conference, as reported this morning by the Associated Press, was to call for a timetable for the withdrawal of allied forces and, more outrageously, to declare that Iraq's "opposition" had a "legitimate right" of "resistance."  While condemning attacks upon civilians, the conferees carefully made exceptions for attacks on foreign troops. 

In other words, the conferees declared that killing American soldiers was "legitimate."  In attendance were Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al—Jafari, who adamantly refused to permit former Baathists to participate in the conference, but who, apparently, did not object to the conferees' support for killing Americans.  It is too early to know all the details about this very important story, but it cannot be good news for President Bush —— or for the cause of freedom and democracy in Iraq —— that the very people we are trying to defend agreed to such a despicable position.

Steven M. Warshawsky   11 22 05