Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Reconciliation in the Iraqi Military

Gina Chon of the Wall Street Journal reports some positive developments between Kurdish and Arab military personnel in Iraq, which has been one of the largest hurdles peace and cooperation within the government. Gina writes:
Gen. Ray Odierno, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, has said Arab-Kurd tensions are the country's biggest security threat. But over the past six months, in parts of Iraq's north, American commanders have brokered a quiet, if uneasy, d├ętente between the two sides' military forces. Officers from Iraq's mostly Arab national army have started working with counterparts from the Kurdish regional government's armed militia, the peshmerga.

American military officers in Kirkuk have persuaded Arab and Kurdish commanders to cooperate partly by emphasizing what it means to be a professional soldier, which is not being involved in politics. They tell them that the problems between Kurdish and Arab politicians in Baghdad, and between the Kurdish regional and Iraqi governments, need to be solved by the politicians -- that their job as soldiers is to take care of security

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