(Meridian : Mississippi) Ucs News--- Speaking from the back seat of the Straight Talk Express Senator John McCain let loose his trademark honesty. Upon hearing of the brokered truce in Basra, McCain declared "Battle of Basra just went tits up for the Bush Administration".
Despite the Bush administrations troop surge and US air power backing Iraqi security forces, the Maliki government failed to bring the Mahdi Army to heel.
Mr. McCain, of Arizona, said he was encouraged that Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki's government had sent its troops to reclaim Basra from the Shiite militias. "I think it's a sign of the strength of his government," Mr. McCain said Friday at a stop in Las Vegas. "I think it's going to be a tough fight. We know that these militias are well entrenched there. I hope they will succeed and succeed quickly."
McCain's opinion of the operation changed dramatically Sunday with the news of the truce. "We accomplished nothing except chasing the people of Basra from their homes. That dam Mahdi army is still a fighting force in the field and they still control the city"
Mr. McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, has made the Iraq war a centerpiece of his campaign; he rode to success in the primary season partly on his early advocacy of the troop buildup. The battle in Basra broke out as he returned from a trip to Iraq this month, proclaiming that violence there was down and that the troop escalation was working.