A Congressional delegation led by Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R – CA) has earned the ignominious distinction of being such a nuisance that the Iraqi government actually asked them to leave on Friday, following public comments from Rohrabacher and an apparent dust-up with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki over his treatment of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MeK).
By far the most attention was given to Rohrabacher’s comments suggesting that once Iraq was “rich and prosperous” they should start sending the US reparation money to compensate for the inconvenience of America’s 2003 invasion and near decade-long occupation.
Faced with massive unemployment and shrill demands from the Obama Administration to sign off on additional years of occupation, Rohrabacher’s comments have managed to simultaneously bemuse and enrage many Iraqis.
For Iraq’s government the answer was simple: they won’t pay a cent. Members of Iraq’s parliament elaborated a bit, mocking the idea as “stupid” and suggesting if anyone should pay reparations it is the US. Others demanded the immediate ouster of the US troops from Iraq.
The US embassy tried to distance itself from the comments, saying the Congressmen did not speak for the Obama Administration. Yet with the administration demanding to keep increasingly unwelcome troops, it is clear they have plenty of issues of contention as well.
Rep. Rohrabacher insists he has “no regrets” for anything he said during the visit, and vowed not to apologize.
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