Bush orders creation of Iraq Stabilisation Group

07 October 2003
US President Bush on 6 October announced the creation of a new Iraq Stabilisation Group headed by National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice. The group is designed to allow the White House to take a more direct role in decision-making on Iraq. Four co-ordinating committees on counter-terrorism, economic development, political affairs and media relations will report directly to Rice. Each committee will include an undersecretary from the State, Defence and Treasury Departments, and senior representatives from the CIA, reported the daily New York Times. The move is seen as a way of shifting responsibility for the reconstruction of the country away from the US Department of Defence.

The change in strategy is viewed by some as tacit recognition that the situation in Iraq is unsustainable. 'This is as close as anyone will come to acknowledging that it [the current security measures] is not working,' a US administration official told the New York Times. When asked about the new strategy, Rice said that the administration now realised that it was in a new phase of the occupation (MEED 3:10:03).

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