Against a background of worsening violence and threats of civil war in his own country, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki spoke to the US Congress today and appealed for ongoing American support. But there's new tension in the US-Iraqi relationship as the Baghdad government dissents from Bush policy on Israel. While the White House has called the growing public differences between the allied governments of the US and Iraq a sign of good old-fashioned democracy blossoming in Baghdad, others say it's a symptom of mounting disenchantment with American power among not only the Iraqi political class, but also among the Iraqi people. What's the immediate future of US-Iraqi relations? What does it mean for the future of the war? Mark Cooper guest hosts.
Segment #2: Rome Talks Fail on Middle East Cease-fire
An international conference today in Rome stopped short of calling for an immediate cease-fire in the Middle East, mostly in the face of strong opposition from Condoleezza Rice. Diplomats from Europe, moderate Arab states and US Secretary of State did agree to support an international military force to stand as a buffer between Israel and Lebanon, but even the details of that are far from clear.
- Making News: Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki Speaks to Congress
Iraq's Prime Minister addressed a joint session of the US Congress today and pleaded for continued American backing for his embattled, fledgling government. Nouri Al-Maliki's speech came amidst controversy with some Democrats upset that he'd criticized Israel as an aggressor in Lebanon while saying nothing about Hezbollah. Today, speaking only of the war in Iraq, Maliki received a standing ovation from both sides of the aisle. John Broder is defense and foreign policy editor of the congressional quarterly.