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Home > India > News > Report

Iraq war will be won by 2013: McCain

Rediff News Bureau | May 17, 2008 02:15 IST

Republican presidential candidate John McCain has declared that he would get most of the American troops home from Iraq by the year 2013.

Delivering a speech at Greater Columbus Convention Center in Ohio on Thursday, McCain said: 'By January 2013, America has welcomed home most of the servicemen and women who have sacrificed terribly so that America might be secure in her freedom. The Iraq War has been won. Iraq is a functioning democracy, although still suffering from the lingering effects of decades of tyranny and centuries of sectarian tension.

'Violence still occurs, but it is spasmodic and much reduced. Civil war has been prevented; militias disbanded; the Iraqi Security Force is professional and competent; Al Qaeda [Images] in Iraq has been defeated; and the government of Iraq is capable of imposing its authority in every province of Iraq and defending the integrity of its borders. The United States maintains a military presence there, but a much smaller one, and it does not play a direct combat role,' he added.

Asserting that the political leadership of United States will change significantly by January 2009, the republican presidential candidate said: "I am presumptuous enough to think I would be a good President, but not so much that I believe I can govern by command. Should I forget that, Congress will, of course, hasten to remind me. I will focus all the powers of the office; every skill and strength I possess; and seize every opportunity to work with members of Congress who put the national interest ahead of partisanship, and any country in the world that shares our hopes for a more peaceful and prosperous world.

The Arizona senator added: "We spend too little time and offer too few specifics on that most important of questions. We make promises, of course, about what kind of policies we would pursue in office. But they often are obscured, mischaracterized and forgotten in the heat and fog of political battle. It is important that the candidates who seek to lead the country after the Bush Administration define their objectives and what they plan to achieve not with vague language but with clarity."