Republican House Speaker John Boehner used strong words to describe President Obama’s actions – or non-actions as the Speaker put it – in dealing with the crumbling state of affairs in Iraq. Speaking of the increase in terrorist movement, Boehner said today:
They're 100 miles from Baghdad. And what's the president doing? Taking a nap.
Reports ABC News: “As al Qaeda-linked terrorists wreak havoc across Iraq, House Speaker John Boehner unloaded on President Obama for ignoring the escalating crisis there.”
Indeed, any stability gained in the region over the last number of years is rapidly deteriorating.
“It’s not like we haven’t seen over the last five or six months these terrorists moving in, taking control of Western Iraq. Now they’ve taken control of Mosul,” Boehner said during a news conference Thursday on Capitol Hill. The Speaker has been vocal that the president should get into the game. In January, Boehner publicly urged Obama to “maintain a long-term commitment to a successful outcome” in Iraq, and said the president needs to “get engaged.”
With terrorists taking back over key cities that were freed after Saddam Hussein was removed from power, Boehner said the Obama administration is failing to reach any kind of agreement with Iraq regarding their inability to control terrorist insurgency. Beohner said these failings “continue to have serious consequences for Iraq and American interests in the region.”
“The president has celebrated our exit from Iraq as a hallmark of his foreign policy agenda but our focus should be instead on completing our mission successfully,” Boehner said earlier this year. “I would urge the president once again to get engaged before it’s too late.”
The Ohio Republican said the rising instability in Iraq has all but destroyed any progress the U.S. made there in over a decade of fighting. Boehner said that at the very least, the U.S. should be providing equipment and technical assistance, if not aerial support.
“The progress made there is clearly in jeopardy,” Boehner said.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-California, acknowledged the state of instability in Iraq, but offered a different viewpoint: “What’s happening in Iraq is obviously very troubling,” she said, adding: “I don’t think there’s any appetite in our country for us to become engaged in any more military activity in Iraq. It doesn’t matter why. It’s a fact. The American people have been exhausted with wars.”
According to ABC News, “Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has asked his parliament to declare a state of emergency that would give him increased powers, but the lawmakers have not done so.”