WASHINGTON – The US ambassador in Baghdad, James Jeffrey, on Tuesday urged the Senate for the means to “finish the job” in Iraq after the complete withdrawal of American troops at the end of the year.
“The Department of State is ready to take the lead. But we need the support and resources to finish the job,” Jeffrey told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
He evoked “a historic opportunity” to find in Baghdad a “strategic partner and a force for stability” in the region, but warned a sudden drop in the US effort could allow Al-Qaeda and other “dangerous” influences to fill the void.
“We need to have platforms around the country to carry out key transitional missions for the next three to five years,” Jeffrey said.
“These include work, political, economic, security and other officials throughout the country, especially in key areas, such as Kirkuk and Mosul.”
Jeffrey said the State Department budget for Iraq would continue to increase but that it was far less than the military budget, which is now decreasing with its declining role.
The committee, chaired by John Kerry, a former presidential candidate, published a report on Iraq raising questions about the transition from the US military to civilian presence.
“It is unclear whether the State Department has the capacity to maintain and protect the currently planned diplomatic presence without a degree of US military support,” it concluded.
“Uncertainty about the nature of US military presence in Iraq after 2012 is complicating all other aspects of the transition and must be clarified,” it said.
“The bureaucratic integration between the Departments of Defense and State remains incomplete, and the unity of effort in Baghdad has not been matched in Washington,” it said.
“A creative and sustainable funding mechanism is needed to pay for the diplomatic mission in Iraq,” it added.
Trump is the ‘greatest troll in the history of the internet’ and Twitter needs to ‘pull the plug’: NYT columnist
President Donald Trump would face an existential crisis if Twitter were to enforce it's own rules and hold him accountable -- and one New York Times columnist wants to see it happen.
"C’mon, @Jack. You can do it," Maureen Dowd wrote, referring to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey with his username on the platform.
She urged Dorsey to "just pull the plug on him."
"You could answer the existential question of whether @realDonaldTrump even exists if he doesn’t exist on Twitter. I tweet, therefore I am. Dorsey meets Descartes," she explained. "All it would take is one sweet click to force the greatest troll in the history of the internet to meet his maker."
Justice Roberts took ‘clear swipe’ at Kavanaugh in opinion siding with liberals in religion case: report
On Friday night, the Supreme Court handed down a decision in South Bay United Pentecostal Church v. Newsom, holding that California Gov. Gavin Newsom's restrictions on church gatherings are not a violation of religious liberty. Chief Justice John Roberts crossed over to join with the liberals for a 5-4 split.
But the ruling was dramatic in a key way. As court watcher Mark Joseph Stern wrote for Slate, Justice Brett Kavanaugh "falsely accused the state of religious discrimination in an extremely misleading opinion that omits the most important facts of the case" in his dissent — and was so dishonest that Roberts went out of his way to rebuke him in the Court opinion.
WATCH: Democratic congresswoman pepper sprayed by police at Ohio George Floyd protest
On Saturday, NBC 4 reported that Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) was pepper sprayed during an incident at a rally in Columbus on Saturday morning.
In footage of the incident posted by local anchor Colleen Marshall, several protesters ran at police trying to control the crowd in an attempt to extricate a female protester, prompting officers to use pepper spray to control the crowds.
In addition to Beatty, Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin and Franklin County Commissioner Kevin Boyce were also caught in the line of fire.
A source provided this video to @ColleenNBC4 showing the incident that resulted in Rep. Joyce Beatty, City Council President Shannon Hardin and Franklin County Commissioner Kevin Boyce getting pepper sprayed Saturday morning. https://t.co/ogqPrajniZ pic.twitter.com/19f1xbC53m