Bush Satisfied With Iraq Progress

Acknowledging 'war fatigue,' president warns against hasty withdrawal
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 12, 2007 4:56 PM CDT
Bush Satisfied With Iraq Progress
Gen. David Petraeus, left, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, meets his field commanders in Baqouba, 60 kilometers (35 miles) northeast of Baghdad, Saturday, July 7, 2007. Sunni extremists are likely to try a series of high-profile attacks to grab the headlines ahead of a watershed report to Congress in...   (Associated Press)

President Bush used today's interim report on the Iraq war to renew his call for Congress to withhold judgment on the troop surge until a September update, saying the military will "be in a better position to adjust" in 2 months. The report notes positive movement in eight out of 18 areas but gives unsatisfactory marks on eight other benchmarks.

Bush expressed concern about the Iraqi government, which has "not done enough to prepare for local elections." He continued to link the war to Al-Qaeda and Iran, the Washington Post reports, and was optimistic overall. "I believe we can succeed,"  he declared at his first briefing in the new press room, which reopened yesterday after nearly a year of refurbishment. (More Iraq stories.)

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