With the prospect of the US delaying their withdrawal from Iraq already growing, Iraqi Defense Minister Abdel Qader Jassim added fuel to the fire today, warning that Iraq’s military won’t be nearly completed with the training designed to enable it to provide security by the 2012 date the pullout was supposed to be completed on.
Jassim warned that he was expecting violence to increase in the leadup to next week’s election, and officials have also warned that violence might actually get even worse after the vote, as post-election negotiations are expected to take quite some time.
Iraq’s army was disbanded following the 2003 US invasion, and the effectiveness of the new military, said to number just under 200,000 soldiers, has been in serious doubt ever since. US troops are relied on to provide logistics, intelligence, and expertise for Iraqi patrols.
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