Al-Maliki’s Texas Two-Step

After U.S. diplomats in Baghdad weighed in, government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh issued a statement that al-Maliki’s words in Saturday’s Der Spiegel interview had been “misunderstood and mistranslated” sans any specifics. Sabrina Tavernise and Jeff Zeleny at the NYT provide a transcript and note

the interpreter for the interview works for Mr. Maliki’s office, not the magazine. And in an audio recording of Mr. Maliki’s interview that Der Spiegel provided to The New York Times, Mr. Maliki seemed to state a clear affinity for Mr. Obama’s position, bringing it up on his own in an answer to a general question on troop presence.

GW prof Marc Lynch author of Voices of the New Arab Public (Mother Jones interview) weighs in on the “mistranslation” of Maliki’s endorsement of a withdrawal in Iraq.

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