Fraser Nelson

Petraeus: America can’t serve as an air force for a Shi’ite militia

Petraeus: America can’t serve as an air force for a Shi’ite militia
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If conservatives had an answer to Woodstock, it would resemble the Margaret Thatcher Conference on Liberty held today by the Centre for Policy Studies. The lineup is stellar, and I’ve been here all day. General David Petraeus is one of the many guests and was asked what he’d do about the rise of ISIS. Here’s what he said, 3:30 into the below clip:

‘If there is to be support for Iraq, it has to be support for a government of Iraq. That is; a government of all the people; and that is representative of and responsive to all elements of Iraq. President Obama has been quite clear on this: This cannot be the United States being the air force for Shia militias or a Shia on Sunni Arab fight. It has to be a fight of all of Iraq against extremists.’

listen to ‘David Petraeus on Iraq’ on Audioboo

</p><p>(function() { var po = document.createElement("script"); po.type = "text/javascript"; po.async = true; po.src = "https://d15mj6e6qmt1na.cloudfront.net/cdn/embed.js"; var s = document.getElementsByTagName("script")[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(po, s); })();</p><p></p><p>It’s a real problem. Maliki has been trying to make Iraq into a Shi’ite state, in the orbit of Tehran, which is why ISIS has been able to make such progress in Sunni parts of the country. If America sends arms, it would not be defending the country it created but another, sectarian state. It underlines the lack of good options facing the West.

Written byFraser Nelson

Fraser Nelson is the editor of The Spectator. He is also a columnist with The Daily Telegraph, a member of the advisory board of the Centre for Social Justice and the Centre for Policy Studies.

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Topics in this articlePoliticsiraqmargaret thatcher