Secetary of State Condoleezza Rice met with Iraq’s foreign minister to share what they regard as the good news of the military surge which she insists has reduced violence in Iraq. Rice believes reducing violence has set the stage for long term economic and social ties between the United States and Iraq. Despite a drop in US deaths, Rice admitted there has yet to be sufficient progress in establishing political and economic institutions which can bring stability to the Iraqi people.
The entire issue of “lasting Iraqi ties” is complex. In reality, outside of oil, what exactly would the US seek in economic terms from an independent Iraq? The future of Iraq, for the immediate time period, rests in establishing relations with other nations of their region. In light of strong religious linkages between Iraq’s Shiites and Iran’s Shiites, the economic and social ties will probably be Iran and Iraq. Sorry, Secretary Rice, we Americans have done yeomen work to help Iran gain power in Iraq.