Some Iraqi officials are beginning to envision a post-occupation Iraq.
"Reconciliation will not include those whose hands are covered with Iraqi blood, Al-Qaeda, or members of the Baath party" of Saddam Hussein, the dictator ousted by the invasion.It remains to be seen if the US will successfully extend the occupation beyond 2011. Whether it does or not, the national consensus in Iraq is that the US is not wanted there. That means that US leverage in that country has already passed its peak and will quickly dwindle from here until we've passed the point that Iraq cannot be considered a US strategic asset.
"Reconciliation does include those who said, 'we resisted the occupiers for seven years, and today they are on their way to withdraw at the end of 2011, so we have to return to our lives,'" Khuzai added, referring to US forces as "occupiers," as many Iraqis do.