ALTERNATIVE READER 146
British General Calls for Pullout 'Soon'
Friday, October 13, 2006
Britain's new army commander said British troops in
Iraq are making the situation worse and must leave the country soon,
according to an interview published Thursday.
Gen. Richard Dannatt said the British military should
"get ourselves out sometime soon because our presence exacerbates the
security problems," according to the interview with the Daily Mail
released on the paper's Web site.
"Whatever consent we may have had in the first place"
from the Iraqi people "has largely turned to intolerance," he said. The
Defense Ministry and Prime Minister Tony Blair's office said they could
not immediately comment.
"We are in a Muslim country and Muslims' views of
foreigners in their country are quite clear," Dannatt said. "As a
foreigner, you can be welcomed by being invited in a country, but we
weren't invited certainly by those in Iraq at the time."
Dannatt was severely critical of British and American
planning for postwar Iraq, describing the rationale behind the invasion as
"I think history will show that the planning for what
happened after the initial successful war fighting phase was poor,
probably based more on optimism than sound planning," he said.
"The original intention was that we put in place a
liberal democracy that was an exemplar for the region, was pro West and
might have a beneficial effect on the balance within the Middle East.
"That was the hope, whether that was a sensible or naive
hope history will judge. I don't think we are going to do that. I think we
should aim for a lower ambition." Posted by
� 2006 Bulatlat
Alipato Media Center
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