Skip to comments.Armitage acknowledges Aust's 'heavy burden' in Iraq (Treachery Abroad ALERT!!!)
Posted on 11/02/2006 5:49:42 PM PST by Aussie Dasher
The former US deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage says no one would fault Australia if it decided to withdraw its troops from Iraq.
But the Federal Government has warned Labor that pulling out would damage the alliance with the US.
Protesters greeted several senior US officials at a dinner at Old Parliament House in Canberra last night.
Inside, the Defence Minister Brendan Nelson's target was the Labor Party.
"Friendships count for something," he said.
"Anyone who thinks that prematurely leaving Iraq, the United States and the United Kingdom would not do damage to our relationship with those countries is in my opinion delusional."
Mr Armitage says no one would begrudge Australia if it decided to withdraw its troops from Iraq.
"No one would fault the fact that Australia has carried a heavy burden, for which the United States and I'm sure Iraqi citizens are really grateful," he said.
Mr Armitage used the occasion to praise the alliance, especially over the war in Iraq.
"I know these are neuralgic issues, they are neuralgic issues in my country too," he said.
"But these men and women are doing the Lord's work, they're standing up for freedom, they're trying to do the right thing and I for one would be very remiss if I didn't thank the Australian people and the Government for their participation."
Mr Armitage says the alliance needs work.
"We've got to each of us get up every day and commit ourselves to do what we can do, whether you're an Australian or an American, to make that alliance better," he said.
Labor's foreign affairs spokesman Kevin Rudd dismissed Dr Nelson's criticism.
"Some might argue it was delusional to go to war in Iraq without a plan for the post war period," he said.
"We in the Labor Party have never had a view that an alliance equals automatic compliance."
SHut up Secretary Arimtage I hate this guy
I don't know which secretary of past President I hate Maddy NOT TOO Bright or this loser
AD tell your Mates stay in Iraq with US troops
Australia is a sparsely populated continent reasonably accessible to Asian hordes. I do hope Australia realizes the importance of our willingness to sacrifice for them if the case need be.
Did you read the comments of our Defense Minister?