Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

In 2006, Biden proposed a divided Iraq to create stability

WASHINGTON — As Iraq edges toward chaos, Joe Biden is having a quiet I-told-you-so moment.

In 2006, Biden was a senator from Delaware gearing up for a presidential campaign when he proposed that Iraq be divided into three semi-independent regions, for Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds. Follow his plan, he said, and U.S. troops could be out by early 2008. Ignore it, he warned, and Iraq would devolve into sectarian conflict that could destabilize the whole region.

The Bush administration chose to ignore Biden. Now, eight years later, the vice president's doom-and-gloom prediction seems more than a little prescient.

Old sectarian tensions have erupted with a vengeance as Sunni militants seize entire cities and the United States faults the Shiite prime minister for shunning Iraq's minorities. While the White House isn't actively considering Biden's old plan, Mideast experts are openly questioning whether Iraq is marching toward an inevitable breakup along sectarian lines.

"Isn't this the divided Iraq that Joe Biden predicted eight years ago?" read an editorial in the Dallas Morning News last week.

The public musings about Biden's being ahead of the curve haven't gone unnoticed by his supporters — even if Biden is staying quiet about his 2006 plan. Biden's office declined to comment.

"He's been right," said former Sen. Ted Kaufman, the longtime Biden aide and confidant who replaced him in the Senate. "But you'll be hard pressed to find an 'I did this' or 'I did that.' He's not an 'I told you so' kind of guy."

Other Biden predictions on Iraq have proved less prophetic. In 2010, as the United States was pulling its troops out, Biden professed optimism that Iraq was moving toward a stable, representative government. "This could be one of the great achievements of this administration," he said.

Then-Sen. Joe Biden proposed that Iraq be divided into three regions, for Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds, to avoid sectarian conflict.

Associated Press (2006)

Then-Sen. Joe Biden proposed that Iraq be divided into three regions, for Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds, to avoid sectarian conflict.

In 2006, Biden proposed a divided Iraq to create stability 06/21/14 [Last modified: Saturday, June 21, 2014 11:31pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Forecast: Sunny skies, drier air dominate throughout Tampa Bay region

    Weather

    Drier air continues to filter into the Tampa Bay area on Tuesday, with clear skies and a slight chance of light rain during the afternoon.

    Tampa Bay's 7 day forecast. [WTSP]
  2. Florida education news: Makeup days, graduation honors, sex education and more

    Blogs

    MAKEUP DAYS: Hillsborough County schools will eliminate four early release days to meet minimum state time per course, after missing seven days because of Hurricane Irma. • Indian …

    School classrooms are back up and running after Hurricane Irma. Districts are now setting makeup schedules for time missed.
  3. Rick and Tom podcast: Bucs' Gerald McCoy frustrated with disrespectful fans

    Bucs

    Rick Stroud and Tom Jones discuss Gerald McCoy's latest comments on disrespectful fans who attack his teammates, Donald Trump, protests by DeSean Jackson and Mike Evans, and his respect for the …

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy (93) warms up before an NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn., on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.
  4. Tampa heading into several tough budget years

    Local Government

    TAMPA — Less pain now, more pain later.

    The Tampa City Council will hold a final public hearing on the proposed 2018 city budget and property tax rate at 5 p.m. Thursday on the third floor of Old City Hall, 315 E Kennedy Blvd.
  5. The Daystarter: Rick vs. Rick 2.0 tonight; Bucs' McCoy says some fans cross line; Trump associate to testify; helicopter crashes onto Odessa roof

    News

    Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.

     

    Rescuers respond to a crash of a small helicopter on the roof of a home in the Odessa area on Monday. [Hillsborough County Fire Rescue]