Cheney Visits Iraq


May 9, 2007

Stepping into the quicksand of Iraqi politics, Vice President Dick Cheney arrived in Baghdad for a surprise visit.

His meeting with Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki went over familiar
ground: disappointment in the continued violence in Iraq, like the suicide bombing that ripped through a normally peaceful Kurdish city earlier today, killing at least 14. The two governments renewed their pledge to continue working together toward a solution.

"Obviously talked about the way ahead in terms of our mutual efforts
to help build an Iraq that is safe and secure," said Cheney.

Cheney also met with America's top commander in Iraq, General David
Petraeus, for a firsthand briefing of the situation on the ground.

On Capitol Hill, much of that talk these days is about how the Bush administration will follow through on its commitment to the Iraqi
government and the funding of U.S. troops.

While House Democrats are working to build support for their latest
spending plan; the White House is already promising a veto.

The proposal calls for two stages providing $30 billion for combat operations through mid-summer but requiring another vote in July about a possible troop withdrawal.

Military leaders say they need more time and that Iraq is slowly moving closer to a better future.

"The challenges the people of Iraq face are significant but they are not
insurmountable," said Gen. William Caldwell.

The same could be said of Congress as lawmakers continue to struggle
toward compromise.


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