Thursday, June 26, 2014

'We Should Have Had Air Cover': Nouri al-Maliki Blames Obama for Blitzkrieg #ISIS Advance — #IRAQ

Well, that U.S.-Iraq security cooperation is working out just swell.

"We should have had air cover."

At the Los Angeles Times, "Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki faults U.S. in crisis":

Iraq’s parliament will meet next week to begin the process of forming a new government, officials said Thursday, as Prime Minister Nouri Maliki blamed the United States for his army’s inability to stop Sunni Muslim insurgents who are threatening his grip on the country.

In an interview with the BBC’s Arabic-language service, Maliki said that the Iraqi army would have been able to block the insurgents’ advance into northern and western Iraq if the U.S. had moved more quickly to deliver fighter planes that Baghdad had purchased.

Apparently referring to F-16 jets that U.S. officials have said would arrive no earlier than September, Maliki said Iraqi officials had bought 36 of the planes and thought they would have received them by now.

“I’ll be frank and say that we were deluded when we signed the contract,” Maliki told the British broadcaster in his first interview with an international news organization since the insurgents seized Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, earlier this month.

We should have sought to buy other jet fighters like British, French and Russian, to secure the air cover for our forces,” he said. “If we had air cover, we would have averted what had happened.”

And at BBC News, "Iraqi PM welcomes Syria air strike on border crossing."