Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki could ask President Barack Obama at their scheduled Nov. 1 meeting to boost the U.S. military assistance to Iraq as the Middle Eastern country aims to address security threats, Politico reported Thursday.
Philip Ewing writes Lockheed Martin-built F-16 fighters are already slated for delivery to Iraq in 2014 and the country’s counterterrorism troops recently joined the U.S. and other forces in an exercise in Jordan.
Al-Maliki recently wrote in The New York Times he wants to equip the Iraqi forces with military weapons such as helicopters and other aircraft in order to counter threats from terrorism and nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, according to the report.
A senior administration official told reporters the U.S. and Iraq intend to use a strategic approach aimed at tracking down terrorist groups Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Politico reports.
Ewing also writes Obama previously received a joint letter from the Senate Armed Services Committee opposing further military ties between the U.S. and Iraq because of al-Maliki’s perceived bad leadership.
“This failure of governance is driving many Sunni Iraqis into the arms of Al Qaeda in Iraq and fueling the rise of violence, which in turn is radicalizing Shia Iraqi communities and leading many Shia militant groups to remobilize,” the senators wrote.
“These were the same conditions that drove Iraq toward civil war during the last decade and we fear that fate could befall Iraq once again,” they added.