President Bush said Friday he has no timetable for deciding on a military strike against Iraq and may not decide this year. "And if I did, I wouldn't tell you or the enemy," Bush told The Associated Press. Pressed on whether he would decide this year, he said, "Not necessarily."
Bush's comments came as U.S. officials met with Iraqi opposition groups and amid growing unease from members of Congress about the wisdom of taking military action against Iraq without just cause. On Thursday, House Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, cautioned against an unprovoked U.S. attack against Saddam. Sens.
Dick Lugar, R-Ind., and Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., have been among Republicans who also have expressed concern. "My own view would be to let him bluster, let him rant and rave all he wants," Armey said of the Iraqi president. "As long as he behaves himself within his own borders, we should not be addressing any attack or resources against him."
Six Iraqi opposition leaders spent two hours meeting with senior administration officials at the State Department. Afterward, department spokesman Philip Reeker said the meeting focused on "coordination of the U.S. government's work with the Iraqi opposition and enhancing cooperation among Iraqi opposition groups."
A spokesman for the Iraqi group, Dr. Hamid al-Bayati, of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, said the Iraqis presented their vision "for the overthrow of the dictatorial regime in Iraq." (Albawaba.com)
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