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US Never Intends to Leave Iraq

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TEHRAN, June 13 (ICANA) – Many Iraqis have vowed that if the nearly 50,000 US troops remaining in the country continue their occupation beyond their scheduled departure date of December 31, 2011, they will no longer tolerate their presence.
Monday, June 13, 2011 10:31:49 PM
US Never Intends to Leave Iraq

Press TV has interviewed Nada Hashwi, a political scientist in Beirut for her insight on the prospect of a continuing US presence in Iraq.

Two other guests, Zayd al-Isa and Michael Burns, also participated in the discussion. The following is the rush transcript of the Ms. Nashwi's remarks during the event.

Q: What is your take on the idea (put forward by another guest, that) it is very hard for Americans to leave a failed state? Do you think that is the reason why the US wants to stay in Iraq to help it prosper?

Nada Hashwi: Well, first of all, the situation in Iraq, definitely with what we just saw earlier, is deteriorating day by day. Let's not forget that. And how long has the US been in Iraq? Since 2003, I believe. For the gentleman in the US right now to say that the Americans don't like to cut and run and leave everything behind... Let's see. From 2003 till now, how many years are these? Did we see stability in the country? Definitely not. I mean we only see more bloodshed happening day by day.

Now, the American citizens are definitely war-weary. They don't want to support any kind of war. They don't want their sons to be killed for people that they are not concerned with. The United States administrations, since Bush's administration I should say, got themselves involved in things that they shouldn't have. First of all, I can definitely feel what the American citizens... They don't want their tax to go on something that they are not even concerned with. So, this is one thing. And for me, and for the gentleman to say that they don't like to leave things unfinished behind them is nonsense. We are talking here of strategic... Americans do not work by how they feel, they don't work like “if I love this person, I've got to stand by him till the end.” It is what benefits the country. This is first and foremost.

Q: What does that mean Ms. Hashwi when you say what benefits the country? Because there are a lot of regular Americans that would say that these wars had definitely not benefitted the average American. Perhaps [for] the military complex of the country, this is what they want.

Ms. Hashwi, what is the security situation [like] in general in Iraq? When everyday, [there] seems to be talks about Americans withdrawing from Iraq, there is a surge in violence. Why is this the case?

Nada Hashwi: First of all, let me just remind everybody that al-Qaeda did not exist in Iraq before the invasion of Iraq by the US. Let's put that on the side. I mean al-Qaeda came way after that. There are three concerns or I should say three parties, if we want to talk about security and who wants the US troops to stay and who will benefit from this. The US administration, the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and certain Iraqis, actually businessmen that will benefit from the US staying there.

Of course, this will definitely not benefit the Iraqis.

Let me just take you a little bit [to the time] before that happened. Like we said, Mr. Obama in his campaign, he used [a piece of] poetry to say “we shouldn't be staying in Iraq, we shouldn't be doing this, we shouldn't be doing that.” And definitely that was for his campaign, and there is no difference between him and Mr. Bush.

They should be leaving by December 31, 2011. When they actually signed the agreement, they had left an open leeway for them to actually stay beyond that date.

Now, if we look back a little bit, and we see what is happening in Iraq right now, I mean we see there is a lot of violence happening, the sectarian sections, there are killings of government officials, of judges, of lots of civilians. There are a lot of things happening. And we see US congressmen coming actually to ask for war compensation from the Iraqi government.

Now what does that tell you exactly? That tells you for sure that they did not intend to leave Iraq. And this is definitely the jewel for them. Like the gentleman in Washington said, the US citizens are going bankrupt, they are in need of money. ... If we go a little bit towards [the issue of] what will happen and what happened in the Middle East lately, [we understand] definitely [that] they want to stay in Iraq, [for instance] because of what happened in Egypt. Egypt is not like before. That is for sure. Now we have Syria, we have Iran to be concerned about. And if they leave Iraq -- and let's not forget Saudi Arabia as well -- that means they have a very weak area there where they are not going to be able to control things.

And Mr. Iyad Allawi had said yesterday as well that with the US troops leaving, they want to ask Iran not to interfere in internal situations. So, that definitely tells you that the opposition leader here is asking the US clearly to stay.

So, this is only for the media. What is happening underneath everything is [that] the US never intends to leave, Obama's poetry was all for his campaign, and they just want the bill to be paid they want to be in the Middle East because things are not the same anymore.

Q: If the Iraqis choose not to allow Washington to stay, what will happen? Do they even have that flexibility to be able to say no to Washington? Thirty seconds please.

Nada Hashwi: No, definitely not, like I said before. It was only a piece of paper that got signed and had a leeway for them to stay ... and there was actually a plan from the whole beginning. They don't want them to leave, because Saudi Arabia doesn't want these people to leave because that will make the other opposition which is the southern block, Iran, Syria, and all the other countries win. So, definitely, it was from the beginning... The Iraqi officials want the US to stay.

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