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Iran leader in landmark Iraq trip
Looks like US's efforts to bring peace into the ME has started bearing fruits, but are these fruits good for the USA and other countries in the region?
Image and article from BBC News follows.
[Image: 1.jpg]
Talibani and Ahmedijad holding hands S2
Iran leader in landmark Iraq trip
Security in Baghdad is tight for the Iranian president's visit
President's arrival
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has received a warm welcome in Baghdad on the first ever visit to Iraq by an Iranian president.
The visit marks the culmination of a process of normalisation between the two countries after the long war they fought in the 1980s.

Correspondents say the two-day visit is also a strong show of support for the Shia-dominated government in Baghdad.

After talks with the Iraqi president, Mr Ahmadinejad said the visit opened a "new page" in Iran-Iraq relations.

"We have the same understanding of things and the two parties are determined to strengthen their political, economic and cultural co-operation," the Iranian president said in a joint news conference with his Iraqi counterpart, Jalal Talabani.

Is it not funny that those with 160,000 forces in Iraq accuse us of interference
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

"A united, powerful and developed Iraq is in the interests of all countries of the region."

Mr Talabani called Iranian president's visit "historic".

Mr Ahmadinejad's visit has come without the assistance of the United States.

US forces are not involved in security for the visit and did not provide helicopters to transport Mr Ahmadinejad into central Baghdad.

Instead he had to travel by car along the usually dangerous road from the airport to Iraqi President Jalal Talabani's residence near the US-controlled Green Zone.

There, he was warmly greeted by Mr Talabani as he walked down a red carpet past an honour guard.

Mutual accusations

The US has accused Iran of supporting Shia militants in Iraq, a charge Tehran denies.

Before leaving for Iraq, Mr Ahmadinejad laughed off the American accusations.

"Is it not funny that those with 160,000 forces in Iraq accuse us of interference?" he asked.

The US and Iran are also at odds over Iran's nuclear programme. Iran says its programme is for peaceful power generation only but the US and other Western countries fear Tehran is trying to build nuclear weapons.

The UN Security Council is currently considering new sanctions against Iran over the nuclear issue and a vote could take place as soon as Monday.

Complicated relationship

All this puts the Iraqi government nervously in the middle, allied to both the United States and Iran, says the BBC's John Leyne in Tehran.

Despite the reconciliation between Baghdad and Tehran, many analysts believe that in the long term, the two countries are destined to be rivals for regional power.

During the long war between them in the 1980s, many of the prominent Shia now in positions of power in Iraq fled to Iran as Saddam Hussein cracked down on internal dissent.

The US-led overthrow of Saddam's regime allowed them to return from exile.

Trade is now growing between the two countries and tourism, in the form of Iranian pilgrims visiting major Shia shrines in Iraq, is booming.

Further complicating the relationship between the US, Iraq and Iran is the potential of Iran to be a US ally - against al-Qaeda and the Taleban in Afghanistan, says the BBC's Hugh Sykes in Baghdad.

Shia Iran has little in common with the fundamentalist Wahhabists of the Taleban and al-Qaeda, he says.

Story from BBC NEWS:

This was not unexpected since the US paved the way for a Shia-led government in Iraq that sooner or later should take this step to become close friends with their Shia partners in Iran.

The question is whether the US average citizen understands that this was worth all these expenses in money and American lives....
I also wonder if Ahmadinawhackjob read Vince Flynn's new book, and realized the caricature he represents and the consequences personally for him.
I know it's cultural only,but men holding hands and kissing just SUC.KS!!!!

Seriously,there is no more reason to think Shiite Iraqis are willing to be slaves to Persians than there is to think Canadians are willing to be slaves to the USA.

Why do you people persist in such nonsense? You think Arabs do not have a pride at odds with Persian history or what? That idea is just ignorant,UNLESS you believe that the Iraqi Shiites have no Arab centric pride or Iraqi centric nationalism,but for some reason Iranians DO have these prides on their side.

The logic is vapid.

OF COURSE the iraqis want good relations with Iran,it's their neighbor that is roughly 2.5 X their size they had a blood letting with recently. I'd be surprised if they did not want good relations with them. Does that mean the Arabs will allow the Persians to use them like cattle?

How ignorant,no logic,just ideology from pre conceived notions. Now IF the Shiites of Iraq were not capable of ruling Iraq,then maybe this view would hold water. Even then,you would have to believe most the Shiites are into shism more than nationalism,which likely is not accurate.
Palladin Wrote:I know it's cultural only,but men holding hands and kissing just SUC.KS!!!!
Couldn't agree more. Remember the pics of Bush holding hands and kissing with that Saudi king? Ugh! Bush's even a Westerner.
"You know, Paul, Reagan proved that deficits don't matter." Dick Cheney
Ugh, there is just something about those Damned Muslims. They either love goats or men. It just isn't.................normal. No wonder Islam is so "buggered" up.
All men are frauds. The only difference between them is that some admit it. I myself deny it.
H. L. Mencken

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