LONDON TIMES- USA In Talks With Rebels
Photo of today's many bombings...
Amazing, all the stories overseas and not a peep at home. After scooping all those Downing Street memos that detailed the conspiracy between Bush and Blair to launch an illegal war on false premises, now comes more news broiling out of the clattering tea kettle of Iraq.
From the London Times:
AT a summer villa near Balad in the hills 40 miles north of Baghdad, a group of Iraqis and their American visitors recently sat down to tea. It looked like a pleasant social encounter far removed from the stresses of war, but the heavy US military presence around the isolated property signaled that an unusual meeting was taking place.I remember Vietnam. Nixon tried to bully his way to victory, he then tried to bomb North Vietnam for victory and finally he had to run off to Mao of China and kiss his *ss and then go to Russia and kiss Breshnev's *ss and both then muscled North Vietnam into letting go of us so we could escape with the phony "peace with honor". Gack. So here we go again, demonizing those opposing us while trying desperately to cozy up to them.
After weeks of delicate negotiation involving a former Iraqi minister and senior tribal leaders, a small group of insurgent commanders apparently came face to face with four American officials seeking to establish a dialogue with the men they regard as their enemies.
The talks on June 3 were followed by a second encounter 10 days later, according to an Iraqi who said that he had attended both meetings. Details provided to The Sunday Times by two Iraqi sources whose groups were involved indicate that further talks are planned in the hope of negotiating an eventual breakthrough that might reduce the violence in Iraq.
The Americans were then said to have launched into a lengthy session of questioning about the structure of the insurgency, which is far from a unified entity.Heh. Our eager beaver negotiators certainly are poor poker players. You want information like that, you don't ask direct questions. In the natural flow of conversation, you tease out the information. Subtle and sneaky!
Coalition military intelligence has identified at least four separate strands of anti-American opposition, including ZarqawiÂs jihadists, former members of SaddamÂs regime, Sunni Arab nationalists and criminal gangs.
The links between these groups remain murky and the American team began to irritate the Iraqis with what some saw as a crude attempt to gather intelligence. They asked questions about the Âhierarchy and logistics of the groups, how they functioned, how orders were dispatched, how they divide their work and so onÂ, the Iraqi source said.
ÂIt was a boring line of questioning that indicated an attempt to discover more about their enemy than about finding solutions,Â one of the sources added. ÂWe told the translator to inform them that if they persisted with this line we would all walk out of the meeting.Â
The Iraqis had agreed beforehand to focus on their main demand, Âa guaranteed timetable of American withdrawal from IraqÂ, the source said. ÂWe told them it did not matter whether we are talking about one year or a five-year plan but that we insisted on having a timetable nonetheless.ÂHahahaha. One has to be amused in all this hell to read such cheeky stuff! Like the chickadee, these men aren't easily intimidated. I am relieved chickadees don't carry bombs! Geeze, the Iraqi people fighting us will stop...if we agree to go. They will let us leave, unmolested just like North Vietnam let us depart from Vietnam in one bleeding piece! But of course, Bush won't set a deadline.
The demand did not meet with a favourable response from the American team, perhaps because a timetable is the one thing that President George W Bush has declared he will not agree to.
Maybe if our Congresspeople were to go to Iraq and demand a meeting, they could tell the military to tell Bush he has to set a deadline!