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Iraq Welcomes Back Saddam's Soldiers

One of the most criticized decisions made by the U.S. back in 2003 when it stumbled into Iraq like a drunk Mel Gibson at a bar mitzvah was the disbanding of the Iraqi army. All these years later, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is reinstating 20,000 of Saddam Hussein’s officers.

The move has been criticized by Maliki’s political opposition as a stunt.

When the Coalition Provisional Authority sent the soldiers packing after the invasion, it created a huge pool from which the insurgency could draw angry men with guns and the knowledge to use them. — PZS

New York Times:

The Iraqi government said Thursday that it would reinstate 20,000 army officers who served under Saddam Hussein, a surprising move given that Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki has focused his campaign in the coming parliamentary elections around denouncing the former Baath government.

Mohammed al-Askari, a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense, said the prime minister approved the reinstatement of the officers, which he said would begin immediately.

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