Kingston Says We Still Have Role in Iraq - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

04/17/03

Kingston Says We Still Have Role in Iraq

With the majority of the battle of war over, what's next? The US still has a major obligation to Iraq, which no longer has a leader or a government. But Middle Eastern specialist Jack Shaheen tells WTOC the US has a tough role to play assisting--but not taking over.

"I think it's up to the administration to make sure that the men and women who work with the Iraqis have the wherewithal, the expertise, to address the need of the country, bring peace to the area," he said.

So how will the US assist Iraq in getting back on its feet? WTOC caught up with First District Congressman Jack Kingston on his way back into town. From what he tells us, it's going to take time, patience, and help from the international community.

"We need to have some involvement, because we don't want to turn over the victory of the Third ID over to the UN," he said. "They're not pro capitalist, they're not pro enterprise, they're not even pro-American."

He feels that the US and Britain should play the largest part in helping the Iraqi people, but we need to not overstep the boundaries.

"We need to remember the Iraqi people can run their country," Kingston said. "They needed outside liberation, but they didn't need outside occupation."

That's why he feels other nations need to pitch in as well.

"I would rather see over 49 coalition countries lead the way in terms of rebuilding Iraq," he said. "I think the Iraqi people are very savvy, great merchants, and they're well educated and they have a great oil reserve."

This will help fund some of the many things to help them become a solid, independent, democratic society.

"Right now we just need to get it set up," Kingston told us. "They need a rule of law. They need a constitution. They need a system to distribute goods and services. They need schools, they need healthcare, they have a long list of immediate needs."

These are all things that the US is hoping emerging Iraqi leaders will facilitate with the assistance of the United States.

Congressman Kingston added that the official word out of the Pentagon is that there's still hostility and that we can't bring troops home yet.

Reported by: Holly Bristow, hbristow@wtoc.com

 

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