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BLITZER’S BLOG: al-Assad, al-Maliki and Ahmadinejad: What's going on?
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki embrace in Tehran on June 8, 2008
August 18th, 2011
04:19 PM ET

BLITZER’S BLOG: al-Assad, al-Maliki and Ahmadinejad: What's going on?

(CNN) - President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton finally have done what so many have been urging them to do for a long time: publicly call on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down.

They coordinated their statement with similar statements from other allied leaders, including from Canada, France, Germany, Britain and the European Union.

In the face of reports that more than 2,000 Syrian civilian protesters have been killed by the Syrian regime, even some Arab and Muslim countries in the region have started to abandon al-Assad, including Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

In sharp contrast, one key U.S. Arab ally in the region has decided to stand with al-Assad. I’m referring to the government of Iraq led by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.

Encouraged by his friends in neighboring Iran, al-Maliki has, according to a report in The New York Times, urged the Syrian protesters not to “sabotage” the state. He also recently hosted an official Syrian delegation in Baghdad.

“Mr. Maliki’s support for Mr. Assad has illustrated how much Iraq’s position in the Middle East has shifted toward an axis led by Iran,” the Times said. “And it has also aggravated the fault line between Iraq’s Shiite majority, whose leaders have accepted Mr. Assad’s account that al Qaeda is behind the uprising, and the Sunni minority, whose leaders have condemned the Syrian crackdown.”

Al-Maliki’s Shiite-led government has good relations with Iran, al-Assad’s main backer.

The United States has spent hundreds of billions of dollars trying to promote democracy and freedom in Iraq since its removal of Saddam Hussein back in 2003. Nearly 5,000 American troops have been killed in Iraq; tens of thousands more have come home with serious injuries.

I know top American officials in both the Bush administration and now in the Obama administration have been deeply frustrated by al-Maliki’s cuddling up to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. You’ve seen the pictures of them kissing in Baghdad and Tehran.

Publicly, U.S. officials have offered various explanations, including the need for these two neighboring countries to maintain good relations. Privately, I can tell you, they’ve been deeply embarrassed.

And beyond that, they fear that all the U.S. sacrifices in Iraq over the years may not necessarily have a very happy ending when all the U.S. troops leave and all the dust settles.

RELATED STORY: U.S., Europe call for Syrian leader al-Assad to step down

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Filed under: Iran • Iraq • Situation Room • Syria • Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Scott Adkins

    The simple solution is simply to back off and incinerate Iran's military and nuclear capability. Plus, several 2,000 JADAMS on their parliment building the next time their President is giving some sort of hate speech would be a good idea. Just finish them off and be done with it. Then, tell the rest of those maniacs that we are done playing games with them: Either leave us in peace, or we will simply annihilate you. Period.

    August 24, 2011 at 11:04 am |
  2. J.V.Hodgson

    The recent events globally ( Tunisia, Egypt and Syria plus others) are the most clear indication that never mind going to military war or economic war thru diplomatic routes or even (Libya) regime change via both partial military intervention and diplomatic urgings and sanctions.
    Especially when the desire is a Western style democracy. Remember ,we separate Church/religion and State Lawmakers from Judiciary and have either Republican political systems or mixed monachy and constitutional systems.
    QED in Iraq and Afghanistan where the body politic and religion or Qu'ran are intertwined thru sharia law will not change by force or diplomatic pressures from outside. These were and will remain Islamic states, this should not be perceived as problem. Al qaeda is an extreme form of Islam it will never be mainstream They will evolve over time, all we can hope to achieve from the west is Education for all and a free and open voting system for elected government allowing for the tribal nature of most of these nations... i.e achiveing fair representation. We have to stop involving ourselves or interfering because say Sunni's and Shiite's are fighting each other, just make sure represetation is failt balanced regardless of sects ethnicity or whatever
    In Americas Parlous economic stae I sat gey out of Iraq and afgahnistan PDQ and whatever is or would be budgeted is spent on rebuilding the US economy, infrastructue alternative energy development and using funds to re-set the equity balance and costs of Home mortgages. And yes raise taxes on the rich for now and cut spending elsewhere and stop trying to be the worlds policeman its not possible.

    August 19, 2011 at 12:46 am |
  3. Alec

    ...Canada... Canada... is demanding Al-Assad step down?? Oh wow, obviously, he'll resign by the end of the week. When Canada makes a demand in foreign policy, even the most vicious dictators quiver in their boots and are forced to acquiesce.

    August 19, 2011 at 12:25 am |

      Watch it stupid. Canada is a very valuable ally. Your showing you African ubringing.

      August 19, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
      • lucy

        What does Africa have to do with this? It's Americans who denigrate Canada, the rest of the world generally prefers them to us. Clearly you haven't travelled much.

        August 23, 2011 at 10:07 pm |

    MEETM THE NOW NEW PRESIDENT HILLARY CLINTON. The lady should have been there all along. Hopefully Obama does realize he does not have a clue to how to run this country and he will just fade away while on vacaton. Too bad the big white sharks don't swim off shore at Martha's Vinyard.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:48 pm |
  5. Arlene W.

    3 Cheers for Wolf Blitzer. I never watch CNN because of their views and who they support. I am a long time follower of Dr. Ron Paul, the greatest true AMERICAN in politics. I respect and agree 110% on all his political views on how to run this GREAT COUNTRY we live in.
    Because Mr. Blitzer gave Ron Paul the stage today, Thursday August 18th, 2011, I converted from FOX NEWS to CNN. Mr. Blitz keep up the good work and help us get Ron Paul in the WHITE HOUSE. Thank you from a Real Estate Broker in Las Vegas, Nevada

    August 18, 2011 at 10:30 pm |
    • f

      Hi Arlene, Sorry to say, but you just got suckered into the biggest PR campaign CNN (crap, not news) has done in a long time. They are feverishly trying to pull in anyone to watch their crap and maybe swing a few more votes to the Dems (dumbs). Please do not fall for their idiocy. I love Ron Paul, but the is only going on CNN(crap, not news) to get ANY exposure, since the mainstream media is scared to death of him. They have already blacklisted him from coverage.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:27 pm |

      Ron Paul, may be a fine fellow. But a politician and one who can winthe Presidency he can not. So don't waste your vote on him. Try and put Obama out of the White House with Perry, Palin, Rommeny or someone who can win. We must win for the future of the U.S. depends on it.

      August 19, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  6. twgloege

    Another outcome of the surge no doubt? What a bunch of suckers we (the american people) are.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:24 pm |
  7. zuhair

    What do you expect when the USA administration support whole heartily a theological,sectarian party headed by a prime minister whose idol &hero is Khomeini &Khamani &look for guidance from Iranian oligarchy.The Iranian influence is so great that general Qassemi of so called revolutionary guard is the actual ruler of Iraq ,he practically dictates to so called elected government installed in Baghdad green zone. Attacking Iranian opposition in Ashraf was his main goal which Al Maliki carried with efficiency &cruelty killing &wounding many innocents despite American opposition to such move.Iraq despite great Iraqi & American sacrifices in men and women &billions of dollars is turning to Militia &mafia run state .Violation of human rights &corruption is daily practice ,Iraq is back to middle age state where clergmen runs the country.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:00 pm |
  8. Greg

    This can be summed up in one word. Vietnam. Someone once said, that if you do not learn from your past mistakes you are doomed to repeat them. I find it ironic that 87% of the country disapproves of our politicians and 87% re-elect their politicians. We have no one to blame but ourselves. My recommendation, if you want change, change the people in Washington, otherwise you do not have a right to complain.

    August 18, 2011 at 9:01 pm |
  9. craig

    That's the danger of a democracy: you can't control who they elect. Heck, just look at the US. The House is filled with people who can't figure out reality, but...they got elected. George II didn't understand that when he decided to re-arrange things in Iraq. Now...well, we got what he elected government that wasn't Saddam.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
  10. Tony 14-0

    There is no way that Syria or anyother Mideast country gives a "rat" what the US thinks or says. Remember that we also said that Ghadaffi "must go" as well. How'd that work out? All this touchy/feely diplomacy has caused us to lose our influence. I'm not saying that we invade or go to war on a moment's notice everybody – but our strength needs to be understood. Strength sometimes can head off hostilities without firing a shot. All we have done in 2.5 years is show weakness to all the world, especially the Arab world.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:57 pm |
    • Mike S. - Dayton, OH

      What in god's name are you talking about? Militarily we have simultaneous operations going on Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia – that we know about. We've decimated al quaida and have a very successful drone operation in Pakistan. How's Libya working out? Well, we've managed to get maximum diplomatic legitimacy and maximum participation from our NATO allies (however insufficient) and may well end up with regime-change and a future semi-democratic state – without losing the life of a single serviceman and spending a couple of billion dollars. If that works out – and it might – it will be one of the least costly successes we've ever had. If we've been showing weakness, it's economically and for a whole lot reasons spanning the last 40 years. That's our biggest problem, and not some lack of saber-rattling by Obama, if that's what you're suggesting.

      August 19, 2011 at 11:18 am |
      • lucy

        One of the problems with liberating all of these people is that many of them actually despise our form of democracy and the fact that we can't get anything done. And one of the problems with W's shoot-first-to-demonstrate-our-strength is that we shot our own first line of defense against Iran when we took out Iraq. Libya may or may not descend into tribal chaos. Whether they do or not, we cannot impose our preferences on people half a world away, as the Brits, the Soviets, and now everyone but the Tea Party has figured out in Afghanistan. But you are correct overall...

        August 23, 2011 at 10:15 pm |
  11. wendy5

    well well well what did the us think new governemtn new start hahahahahahaha they arnt our friends and that hurts you; i'm sure you'll get over it if you leave ; you'll feel better becuase your real home is 3000 miles away you'll forget them soon i promise and you'll be happier and richier

    August 18, 2011 at 7:38 pm |
  12. Samir

    I am an Iraqi, I can tell you that educated people of Iraq appreciate what America did for Iraq and know what is America and what America stands for, but educated people are not decision makers, educated people are smart enough to distinguish between who is good and who is bad, the problem in middle east is this: majority of people don't think that a political party should be found on the bases of universal values and good economy, all political parties here are based on sectarianism and it is deeply disturbing. We know America sacrificed a lot of $ and more than 40 000 casualties of US service men and women, we are disturbed by troubled America's economy, we believe Iraq should side with America forever and America should correct what is wrong with political system in Iraq because Iraqis are Helpless right now.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:33 pm |
  13. Scott Adkins

    True enough. History is littered with the wreckages of unintended, but sometimes easily foreseeable, consequences. While I understand Bush's decision to go into Iraq, I believed then and I believe even more firmly today that Iran, not Iraq should've been the country where we forced a regime change. There is no question Iran supports terrorism. There is no question Iran seeks nukes and the means to deliver those nukes far beyond their own borders. All of that said, I also believe it grossly irresponsible for any U.S. President to sit idly by while Iran develops nukes and supports terrorism. So yes, I think we should take out Iran's nuke capabilities and decapitate the 12th century regime that is running that country.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:27 pm |
    • f

      I do agree with most of what you've said. I will add something I have said 1,000 times since the Iraq war started. Iraq was only a steppingstone. STEP 1 was to easily take over Afghansitan fromthe ill-equipped Talban and establish US miltary power all of the country. Step 2 of the plan was to quickly take down Saddam, take over Iraq and establish USA miltary power all over the country. Step 3 was to squeeze Iran in the middle forcingthem to fight a (certainly losing) two-front war against America once and for all. Two out of 3 would welcome America, only Iran would objet. Three countries rid of Islamo-fascist dictators and regimes and democracy brought to each one. One large war in one contiguous area. Obviously it did not work out that way. Good plan on paper though.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  14. Daniel

    Bush should have stayed the hell out of Iraq! This was a predictable outcome.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
  15. Bert

    This is no suprise to me at all.Was this war worth the loss of our troops and billions upon billions of american dollars? Who are we to think we can go into these countries and change there way of thinking and living?America fought for there freedom and liberty so let these people do the same.There values in life are nothing like our western lifestyle.They don't care about jobs,homes,retirement,health insurance and there compassion for human life is despicable.We can't change there values and how they have lived for thousands of years.They have to change it themselves and fight for there own freedom.
    This belief that america learned from the Vietnam war is a joke.This Iraq and Afghanistan occupation by our troops is a huge mistake by our leaders.Look how many years,dollars and precious lives have been lost..and for what?What has changed over there?Our country is broke and the american spirit is broken!
    How about our people in america?Lets take care of our own for a change instead of providing money and military for the whole world.This and our corrupt government has dropped america to its knees and we are in a dangerous time.I would like to think there is hope but I truly believe we have been on a path of self destruction by our government.Our leaders have become mad with money and power and have lost sight of right from wrong,the american peoples needs and real values.
    Our leader the president at a terrible time when our infrastrucrure is crumbling and the people are well on there way of losing all hope is on a vacation.Has a plan but will announce in September?A man who preeched hope and change has put his country and the american people on the back burner for 3..4..maybe 5 weeks?I have lost all respect for him.
    What has happened to this great country I fought for?I'am deeply concerned for my country and our people.I only wish our leaders felt the same

    August 18, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
  16. teepee

    what do you expect from brothers...

    August 18, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
  17. Jimmy Cracks Capricorns

    So, I wonder if America's relationship with Mexico is frustrating to China....and who cares?

    August 18, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
  18. Marlene

    Philadelphia, PA: We have to stop being the world's big brother. Let Turkey, the dominant financial powerhouse in the region handle this. If someone from China said that Obama needs to step down, we wouldn't take it very kindly. We have no business going around, picking and choosing to oust dictators, but leaving others intact. What about Mugabe in Zimbabwe? If we picked one dictator each week to oust, we'd still be busy by this time next year. I feel for the protesters, but we cannot handle each and every situation. It's not worth our treasure in lives and money, when we have sick, dying, and starving right here in this country. We need to stop supporting dictators, we need to stop feathering their nests. That would be the best thing we can do...

    August 18, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
  19. Exxon

    Their civilization goes back 5000 years. What did you think was a gonna happen ? Middle Eastern USA ? Come On.

    Why did we piss away billions of dollars there. Let run. Run now. Run fast. Lets leave them to their own devices.....

    August 18, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
  20. Steve

    Just what did anyone expect?

    Everyone with any sense knew that US interference in Iraq would result in closer Iran-Iraq relations.

    Stupid US State department actually had a friend in Saddam and his Sunni leadership.. he had to control his Shiite fundamentalists to keep power. Saddam had one of the most western-influenced populations in the ME. What Saddam did wrong was support the Palestinians and ganer the hate of Israel who pulls the strings on American Foreign Policy.

    The US supplied Iraq with precursors, if not outright chemical gas weapons and technology since the early 80's under Reagan (FACT). They promoted both sides of the Iraq-Iran conflict (divide the enemy , let them fight each other adn we will provide them the means to destroy each other). See Iran COntra.. The US evdence that Saddam had WMD is because the US gave it to him in the early 80's.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
  21. cony007

    Who cares!!!! I am moving to Canada to party with Canucks and live with the eskimos.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
    • Osama

      Welcome to Canada! I hope you like snow!

      August 18, 2011 at 10:04 pm |
  22. Joshua Ludd

    So, Democracy wasn't good for Iran, so we destroyed it and re-installed the Shah. Then after the Islamic Revolution we helped Iraq go to war with Iran.. then went to war with Iraq twice. Remind me again why we are meddling with these two countries in the first damned place and why we want to keep on doing it. It has gained us next to nothing and cost us and the people of both countries so very very much.

    August 18, 2011 at 7:01 pm |
    • Dan

      we pitted them against they have found the common 'enemy.' What'd we really think would happen?

      August 18, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
    • Marlene

      We need to stop ascribing to THE ENEMY OF OUR ENEMY IS OUR FRIEND....

      August 18, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • GaryOwen27

      Ask the Red Neck Right, their the ones that created this mess........just like the economy.

      August 18, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
  23. RDriftwood

    The best thing Obama could do to change the mood of the country and help the economy would be to end the wars and bring ALL the troops home RIGHT NOW.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
  24. xioping

    Nothing surprising from former AIPAC official Mr. Blitzer. Just like neocons, he has referred in the past to the brutal US invasion and occupation of Iraq as a "liberation". Mr. Blitzer mentions the hundred of billions of dollars spent and 5000 US troops dead, but no mention of the tens of thousands of Iraqis dead and the murders, rapes and tortures committed by those US troops. Not to mention the tens of thousands of children who will grow up without a mother or father as the result of the US invasion. Once again, nothing surprising from CNN, which is very pro US military and very pro US soldier. Notice how CNN mourned the deaths of US "special" forces soldiers a few weeks ago, giving extensive coverage to the families and children of those killed. Playing sad piano music while showing picture of dead soldier. No mention of the hundreds, if not thousands of innocents dead including children from these night time raids conducted by these "special" forces. Iraq and Iran are neighbors and have every right to have friendly relations. The US needs to mind it's own business and leave the region ASAP.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  25. Fig1024

    "..when all the U.S. troops leave" – sorry, but everybody knows US never leaves an occupied country. We are still in Germany since 1945

    August 18, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
    • Mike

      And I suppose you're going to call the U.S troops stationed in South Korea a Occupation force as well? American forces in Germany ceased occupying when the Western portion became its own country. The troops that are left are for strategic purposes and also a place for wounded U.S troops to stop for emergency surgery and so on before being flown back to the U.S. This is beside the point though, Iraq is playing a game of brinksmanship right now. It cant afford to anger its neighbors, but on the other hand the government knows the chance of a violent uprising occurring in the event that U.S troops were withdrawn is a fair possibility. Admittedly the U.S has the right to be embarrased about this along with being there in the first place, but they have to realize that Iraq has to keep its neighbors happy otherwise things would go pear shaped in a hurry.

      August 18, 2011 at 7:59 pm |
  26. Nick San Diego

    You can thank Bush 2 for this. He had no business going into Iraq.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
    • whoa!

      you're dead on... This was a very real danger when we went in. Another part of the disastrous legacy that the fascist Bush/Cheney regime has saddled us/the whole world with...

      August 18, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
    • f

      I have said 1,000 times since the Iraq war started, Iraq was only a steppingstone. STEP 1 was to easily take over Afghansitan fromthe ill-equipped Talban and establish US miltary power all of the country. Step 2 of the plan was to quickly take down Saddam, take over Iraq and establish USA miltary power all over the country. Step 3 was to squeeze Iran in the middle forcingthem to fight a (certainly losing) two-front war against America once and for all. Two out of 3 would welcome America, only Iran would objet. Three countries rid of Islamo-fascist dictators and regimes and democracy brought to each one. One large war in one contiguous area. Obviously it did not work out that way. Good plan on paper though.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  27. Steve

    These are sovereign nations. Face it, the US has been terrible at empire – it's not in our DNA. We went into Iraq not understanding that if we wanted our way, we had to completely subjugate them. Instead, we fooled ourselves into thinking this was about establishing a democracy as opposed to promoting our own interests. So now we are frustrated because we have achieved neither. If we truly want our interests advanced, then we need to start living our values, here and abroad. That means if another country elects a leader we don't like, we don't try to overthrow them through direct or covert means (Chile, Nicaragua, Congo....and on and on). If we want other people's respect, then we need to respect them. That means getting corporate interests out of our politics by the way – let's clean up our own house before telling others how to keep theirs.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
  28. K

    I'm over 50 live in the PNW am an independent voter all my life – hate the parties. Voted for Obama, (wanted Clinton) very disappointed with leadership. I still want change, Obama has had Bush baggage and I have NEVER liked an Bush. If Ron Paul does not make it I will vote for Obama again. Republican's scare me, the tea party, really scary, were is the love and please God give them brains.

    Please show us more and more of RON PAUL. This guy can't get a break in the news. Reporters just don't cover him, here are reasonable people wanting to hear more from RON PAUL. I wanted to vote for him the last election but wanted my vote to count and again the Republicans hurt everything (Regan and the Bankers/Republicans) the de-regulation of housing and look at that damage, environment ALWAYS needing protection from their greed and drive for money at the cost to the rest of us.

    I have been fighting Bank of America for now three years for a HAMP mod. and have given 10 up-dates of my financials – hard copied. I fit all 5 cat. of the HAMP. I have been to Senator Cantwell and she sent me to the OCC and was in the Office of the Pres. the highest office in B of A for a year and timed out. B of A told the OCC I did not update my information. Lies, but there is no regulation and the Banks know that. That is were all the trouble is and if we could get that worked out, regulate the banks, don't bail, regulate and watch their books – they are still saving themselves even with government programs in place for the people. Where is the President in regards to the Banks, are they feeding him money for favors? Regulate the Banks and watch the economy recover. Banks are out of control – see Well's now charging for ATM card use. Go to Credit Unions American, let the banks fall.

    I have been an executive all my life both National and International and see the Corporates and Banks of this Country running the show. The haves and the have-not's. When American's wake up and see we are the majority and have the vote and the voice watch out Washington and the evil people that run the show.

    If we made Congress a No pay, volunteer for two years, with rules on taking bribes, ya go to jail. There is our deficit short fall. I would serve. I own my own business and would be glad to help turn this Country around with business heads rather then the evil takers we have there now.

    RON PAUL has not changed his talk and I do believe it's time for a big change. Let's give his ideas a try they could not hurt this Country more then what is happening now. Rick Perry God No please No. I am a born again Christian and he is way to full of himself and scary talk, just think of his action once the money comes his way. He appears to be the greediest to me.

    We may need a Rep. Pres. and a Democratic House and Congress to make change happen for this Country. Rep's in my book all need to go they simply don't talk the American people's language. They like to say they are for the people but please, do they think we are that dumb. When you have a HR 1581 Bill out there with something like 40 riders on it. One that we the people could never read and understand that would allow the Grand Canyon to be mine for Uranium, one example, what about the gutting to the EPA, the endangered Species Act and on and on and on, the raping of our environment. Doing away with the EPA, NO, need to have regulation reviewed yes, but don't tel the Rep's take away the protection it holds.

    We can't even get our local gov. to protect and honor the Rules/Codes already written to protect our upland watersheds. Rather the Gov. local and at the State level simply mitigates and degrades to get around the WAC's or RWC's.

    Please report and give more time to RON PAUL so we the people have a choice.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
    • GaryOwen27

      The Red Neck Right will never nominate Paul, a black man, or a woman.

      August 18, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
  29. quack25

    Boy genious G.W was warned about that strong possibility in 2002 but he was blinded by his personal hatred of Saddam. This is so sad that U.S spent so much blood and treasure to unwittingly help Iran climb to super power status.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
  30. Don H

    Are you kidding me this needs to get chopped of at the head right now.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  31. ProperVillain

    Great, more backstabbing from our "friends" in the middle east. It's time we finally realized that most of these people ARE NOT our allies. Thanks for nothing Iraq! Have fun with your new friend who runs his country like it was the 1st century.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  32. phat nguyen

    we spent billions of dollars &more than 4,000 american men and women died and we help the wrong guy to lead Iraq.that was a big mistake we should get the hell out of there now,the hell with them

    August 18, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  33. Ted Davis


    Where are your comments regarding the polls on Obama's approval ratings?

    In the past, you had no problem giving hourly updates on then President G.W. BUSH when his approval ratings went down. I recall you using descriptions such as "rock bottom" to describe Bush's approval ratings when the dipped below 40%. Why the double standard?

    Ted Davis

    August 18, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
    • Dan in Albuquerque

      I have seen several CNN reports on the President's ratings. They were fairly presented with no punches pulled. That is real "Fair and Balanced", just like having Ron Paul interviewed by Wolf Blitzer and Piers Morgan when others seemed to be ignoring him.

      August 19, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
  34. Marley

    I guess that means ... we must go to war with IRAN.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
  35. steven Harnack

    I could have told them all of that 8 years ago! Rummy and Darth Cheney must have known that since it is why they left Saddam in power in '91. I guess that they figured somebody's short-term financial gains were worth it. Either that or they thought they would own the whole mid-east so it wouldn't matter.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
  36. JLS639

    "The United States has spent hundreds of billions of dollars trying to promote democracy and freedom in Iraq since its removal of Saddam Hussein back in 2003."

    Wait, you mean there are still people that believe this? Of course, I know there are people that still believe that... I just with people were smarter than that.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
    • f

      Believe this....I have said 1,000 times since the Iraq war started, Iraq was only a steppingstone. STEP 1 was to easily take over Afghansitan fromthe ill-equipped Talban and establish US miltary power all of the country. Step 2 of the plan was to quickly take down Saddam, take over Iraq and establish USA miltary power all over the country. Step 3 was to squeeze Iran in the middle forcingthem to fight a (certainly losing) two-front war against America once and for all. Two out of 3 would welcome America, only Iran would objet. Three countries rid of Islamo-fascist dictators and regimes and democracy brought to each one. One large war in one contiguous area. Obviously it did not work out that way. Good plan on paper though.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
      • Razan

        I must admit, after the Dems took control of the House, I had HOPED they would step up to the plate and LEAD this coutnry to resolution of many issues facing us, NOT just the war in Iraq, but immigration, pork spending, campaign finance, etc. YET all I see is the whining diatribes of the Democratic leadership firing volley after volley across the aisle and into the White House.So much for Democratic strategy.

        May 21, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
  37. jeryl florence

    What I havn't heard is anyone speak the plain truth which is that it's the greed of the rich that got us here and it's the greed of the rich that's keeping us here. Even though they knew they were driving the economy into the ground, they still rode the wave. The "GETTIN" was too good!

    August 18, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
    • J.Charlotte

      jeryl, not all rich people think it's ok. Don't generalize your statements and act as if you speak for everyone. YOU DON'T..

      August 18, 2011 at 7:42 pm |
      • Lian

        Who would have imagined in 1952 that some 30-40 years on, South Korea would be maanufcturing and exporting cars? Iraq will go from a net importer of terrorists to an exporter of what in 20-40 years? Certainly food. Brainpower perhaps?

        May 21, 2012 at 4:12 am |
  38. mullah dadullah

    ha,ha,ha.when all settles down,iran will take 60% of iraq and 50% of lebanon and come to the israeli borders.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
    • f

      Here's what should have happened..........I have said 1,000 times since the Iraq war started, Iraq was only a steppingstone. STEP 1 was to easily take over Afghansitan fromthe ill-equipped Talban and establish US miltary power all of the country. Step 2 of the plan was to quickly take down Saddam, take over Iraq and establish USA miltary power all over the country. Step 3 was to squeeze Iran in the middle forcingthem to fight a (certainly losing) two-front war against America once and for all. Two out of 3 would welcome America, only Iran would objet. Three countries rid of Islamo-fascist dictators and regimes and democracy brought to each one. One large war in one contiguous area. Obviously it did not work out that way. Good plan on paper though.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  39. jeff

    Oh please stop your Jewish Zionist bs here. You are the one who is frustrated. When US troops come home there will be mercenaries instead you jewish retard. OF course you want us to not know that. Iraq, Iran, Syria should do what they want. It's pathetic that you call a war based on lies after lies as democracy promoting war. Wow just wow. If thats the way you think you need to check your head.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
  40. S1N

    Keep the puppets in line. If they shift off course, replace them. The Iraqis shouldn't have a government that looks out for their interests. We decimated their armies. Their government should reflect OUR interests. If we can't accomplish this through democracy, we should do so by force.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
  41. Jim

    Ecven after years and years of politicians and talking heads telling Americans why we went into Iraq and why we have spent (and continue to spend) hundreds of billions of dollars there, I don't think most of us understand or agree. While China and other countries spend their hundreds of billions in themeselves, their well-being and theur future, we are squandering it away, ready to borrow even more billions from China to then flush them down the toilet again.

    Why haven't we, as the American public done something about this? Our troops are getting killed in Iraq while Al Maliki and Ahmadinejad kiss. We have no jobs and no money left to stimulate the economy because we keep sending that money to Iraq and Afghanistan. WHY???

    The worst part is that we, the American public have been way too passive, not really holding our government accountable. We hired them. We need to hold them accountable and work in our best interest. If we don't, then we won't be entitled to complain when our way of life changes forever for the worse.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  42. Brian Smith

    If we didn't want this to happen we should have annexed Iraq. But no, we removed their dictator, and let them keep their independence and their oil. What did we think they were going to do? Become a puppet country controlled by the USA? LOL.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  43. Grand Oil Party

    History will judge Bush's Iraq war as the single worst decision made by any President of the USA. The cost of that war, which Republicans refused to tax anybody for to pay for it, will endure for generations.

    August 18, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  44. John Smith

    Wolf, here you go again whining about Iran. We are all sick and tired of your obsession with Iran. For you, all roads lead back to Iran. Iran this, Iran that. You are like a broken record, and the rest of us are bored with it. If Iran was a person, you would be the creepy stalker. Get a life!

    August 18, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  45. Corey

    As soon as we leave Iran will come in to fill the void creating a new Iraq/Iran nation and a new, even more powerful enemy in the Middle East.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  46. JackJackson

    Any why are we in middle east again? Bring them

    August 18, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  47. rf924

    But just a few short months ago Broom Hillary was calling Assad a "reformer".

    August 18, 2011 at 5:50 pm |

    Thanks to George Bush's Iraq war, instead of Iraq being a counterbalance to Iran, it is now a partner with Iran in its evil activities in the Middle East.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  49. sean

    a blind man could have seen this coming

    August 18, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
  50. Mac Jones

    Hi Wolf,
    Suggest one of the main problems in the U.S. is the continuous use of the "Hyphenated" citizens, be it African- Americans, Polish- Americans etc. It is divisive and not necessary. They are supposed to be AMERICANS, all of them.
    Besides the colour of their skin, anyone who sees other differences are truly racists.


    August 18, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  51. Jeff

    Guess leading the nation to war based on lies to avenge the attempted murder of a certain president's father didn't work out that well after all. Next time, will the media please do its job and ask some questions? You were there, Wolf, why did it have to be this way? Do you regret your role in not stopping this catastrophe?

    August 18, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  52. Ausgang zum Himmel

    "...they fear that all the U.S. sacrifices in Iraq over the years may not necessarily have a very happy ending when all the U.S. troops leave and all the dust settles."


    August 18, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  53. H

    Why don't you write about the US not to meddle in the internal affairs of other countries! Why should we care? None of those countries threatened the US.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  54. Bill (Louisiana)

    Heck. Obama was the only one in congress who voted against the US leading a coalition against Iraq to begine with. I felt we should have only bombed the heck out of them and take Saddam and WMD out with air strikes if Iraq and not put troops in there. I also said Iraq would turn out like Viet Nam (South becoming part of North) where Iraq would become part of Iran. Why do we have trillions in debt. Why do we have social security and medicare debt problems. HELLO IS ANY BODY HOME IN DC.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
    • Soledad

      I agree with Maha about third parties in genarel. However, I do believe that if a third party candidate were to get into this particular Presidential race, that candidate will take votes away from the Republican candidate; not the Democratic candidate. There are more disaffected Repubs than Democrats. Thus, I will not get overworked if a third party movement enters the picture.

      November 11, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
  55. Karmamaster1

    This was the very reason the US helped Saddam Hussein attain power in Iraq after the Ayatollah Khomeini assumed control of Iran fro the Shaw; we put him there to keep Iran from becoming a super power in the Middle East (put there under the Reagan administration). G.W. took out the only person who stabilized the area; madman or not. Now we have put a weak corrupt government in his place who is more than willing to negotiate with our enemy. Nice work George.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  56. sanjosemike

    What can we expect? They're both Muslims. Although there is a huge difference: Iran are Shia. The majority in Iraq are Sunni. The two sides have been at war since 632. Muslims of all flavors play both sides against the middle. This is their typical behavior. It works for them, with the exception that if too many of these states get nuclear weapons, human survival as a species is doubtful.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  57. xling

    America went on war and killed 1M Iraki s on false accusation, they destroy the whole country, established terrorist groups, at the other hand IRAN never been a threat. What is wrong being friends.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  58. AZDLM

    Our going into Iraq was and is the biggest mistake we have ever made. It's biting us in the a$$ and will continue to for so many years to come.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  59. Vader

    Simple solution...

    Get the heck out and stop all $ going into Iraq and let them both go about their business. Inevitably, they will end up in another shooting war.

    But, make it clear that if the new US policy is that if the US is attacked either at home or overseas and the attackers have any links with either country (and that means a citizen of, sought safe harbor, etc even with there is no 'state-sponsorship'), the US will unleash punitive strikes against that country with no hesitation.

    And I don't mean lobbing a couple of cruise missles, but an overwhelming, merciless onslaught designed for nothing but punishment. I am tired of the US trying to bribe its way to some sense of security with people that clearly do not want to be our friends, so go the other direction and let them live in fear of us.

    Of course, we'd have to follow up on it.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  60. tre

    What the HECK is going on here? We save them from an evil and suppressive tyrant, and now they ally themselves with our #1 officially recognized (country) enemy? Get our troops out. Last straw in my book.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  61. howard


    August 18, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  62. tre

    What the HELL is going on here? We save them from an evil and suppressive tyrant, and now they ally themselves with our #1 officially recognized (country) enemy? Get our troops out. Last straw in my book.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  63. Chris

    We took out Saddam Hussein only to open the door for Iran. He was a horrible dictator but at least with Saddam you had a stalemate. With Iran moving into Iraq like a virus while supporting Hamas and Hezbollah, Israel and by extension the U.S. are about to get into a far trickier situation.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  64. Tom Walker

    Iraq cozy with Iran after the US helps replace a Sunni led government with Shia led government? Couldn't have seen that one coming could we?

    August 18, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  65. Santa Clause

    Gee wizz, a war in an Arab Country with an unhappy ending? Never in my wildest dreams would I think that would happen.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  66. Jim

    America did not spend all that money & all those lives for "freedom & democracy", the goal was/is control of oil and encircling Iran with large military bases–as well as enriching the Cheney/Halliburton crowd. The people of Iraq don't want those bases, don't want foreign troops on their soil. At least a quarter-million Iraqis have been killed, their infrastructure destroyed, their cities poisoned with depleted uranium munitions and so much for "feedom and democracy". The sooner you tell the American people the truth instead of all the Pentagon baloney, the better.

    August 18, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
  67. Dan in Albuquerque

    It's time we let these militant maniacs in Iraq have it. Not another cent as long as they support Iran and Syria. If there is no positive response, let them have that country. Of course, we will have to live with a bloodbath probably as bad as some Saddam Hussein perpetrated. Cut off all money and begin an orderly withdrawal. The Sunnis and the Kurds will be left at their mercy, women wil lose some freedom. We will also lose a source of oil, but it's clear that the militant minority is too influential among Moslem countries for us to bring true Democracy.
    We win some, we lose some. We have lost before, so let's tend to our wounds, save some American lives and a lot money we sorely need. Don't become isolationists, hope for Libya, help freedom when we can,and pick our fights carefully.

    August 18, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
  68. MAC

    The only way any of these bafoons will leave office is under military force and the rest of the world does not have the military strength or will to really do it. So we will have to live with the dictators.

    August 18, 2011 at 4:43 pm |

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