“We, the government of Iraq and the security forces in Iraq are much more suited now for this fight,” Iraqi national security adviser Mowaffak al-Rubaie said on CNN’s State of the Union. “And we believe that now we are leading and we are planning and carrying out most of the combat operations in the country and the United States forces are moving or transitioning to a more support role, more training, more providing more logistical support, rather than engaging in a huge military or kinetic combat operations.”
But al-Rubaie refused to say whether the Iraqi government would permit U.S. troops to stay in the country’s cities past an upcoming June 30 deadline if U.S. Gen. Ray Odierno decided the presence of U.S. troops was still necessary.
“I don't think we should answer this hypothetical question now,” al-Rubaie told Chief National Correspondent John King.
And al-Rubaie was mum when asked how new President Barack Obama was different from former President George W. Bush when it comes to diplomacy and conducting the affairs on the United States.
“I don't want to elaborate on differences,” the Iraqi security adviser said. “But I believe that President Obama understands the situation in Iraq and I believe he wants to stick by ... the withdrawal agreement.”