I continue to believe that everyone has us where they want us in Iraq: We?re holding up the floor for Iraqi politicians to do their endless tribal dance.
The cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan could total $2.4 trillion through the next decade, or nearly $8,000 per man, woman and child in the country, according to a Congressional Budget Office estimate scheduled for release today.
Private security contractors will continue to protect U.S. diplomats in Iraq but will operate under closer supervision by U.S. Embassy officials and with clearer accountability for their actions, according to new rules approved yesterday by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Tuesday ordered new measures to improve government oversight of private guards who protect U.S. diplomats in Iraq, including tighter rules of engagement and a board to investigate any future killings.
Text of an independent review panel's recommendations for all private security contractors in Iraq, as provided by the State Department:
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Tuesday ordered tougher oversight of private guards in Iraq, including tighter rules on the use of force, following deadly shootings involving U.S. security contractor Blackwater.
As of Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2007, at least 3,836 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq war in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count. The figure includes seven military civilians. At least 3,125 died as a result of hostile action, according to the military's numbers.
Violence, language barriers and other problems have frustrated U.S. rebuilding in Iraq for years. Last month, auditors couldn't assess two of four projects because of insurgent activity and other problems.
Iraq's prime minister ordered a crackdown Tuesday on Kurdish PKK rebels, saying Iraq will no longer tolerate the "terrorist" group on its soil, amid Turkish threats of a military incursion.
The US government Tuesday vowed to clamp down on Blackwater and other private security firms in Iraq, which stand accused of killing innocent civilians through gung-ho tactics.