Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Nice Timing

The White House said Monday that Gen. David Petraeus likely will testify before Congress on the sixth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

A spokesman for President Bush, Gordon Johndroe, reiterated that Petraeus, the commander of U.S. troops in Iraq, and Ryan Crocker, U.S. ambassador to Iraq, would testify in open hearings. They will answer lawmakers’ questions about the situation in Iraq, the success of the troop surge and the next steps to be taken.

The highly anticipated report from Petraeus and Crocker is seen as a potential turning point in America’s involvement in Iraq. Several Republicans, who so far have refused to side with Democratic calls for withdrawal, have said they wanted to hear from Petraeus and Crocker before making any decisions regarding U.S. troop levels.

Democrats last week tried to make an issue of whether Petraeus and Crocker would testify in open session and attempted to paint the administration as trying to stifle such testimony. However, the White House was quick to respond that no such plans had been made.

According to Johndroe, the fact that the pair likely will appear before Congress on Sept. 11 has nothing to do with the anniversary of the attack, but was rather dictated by Congress’s tight schedule.


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