Bush Defers on Troop Pullouts, Upbraids Iran

'It's fine with me' if general slows down US withdrawal
By Zach Samalin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2008 10:43 AM CST
U.S. President Bush delivers remarks to U.S. troops at Camp Arifjan, in Kuwait, Saturday, Jan. 12, 2008. Kuwait is the first stop for Bush who is on a tour of five Arab countries. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – At a naval base in Kuwait today, President Bush praised the success of US forces in Iraq since the surge and said he would not pressure Gen. David Petraeus to continue troop drawdowns beyond the 30,000 scheduled to be pulled out by July. "My attitude is, if he didn't want to continue the drawdown, that's fine with me," the president told reporters. "I said to the general, 'If you want to slow her down, fine. It's up to you.' "

Petraeus is due to give Congress another progress report this March. Bush also charged Iran with continuing to foment violence in Iraq, supporting militants with training and aid. Petraeus told reporters overall flow of weaponry from Iran into Iraq is down, but attacks with "explosively formed projectiles," which have been tied to Tehran, are up sharply, the AP reports.