Leading Iraq war architect Dick Cheney made an unannounced visit to Baghdad today, beginning a nine-day Middle East tour by promising Iraq the "unwavering commitment of the United States in finishing the difficult work that lies ahead." John McCain, traveling as a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, simultaneously met with other Iraqi leaders in the capital, AFP reports.
Cheney's visit, in which he met with Iraq's president and prime minister and held talks with army chief David Petraeus and US ambassador Ryan Crocker, came as two explosions ripped through the capital, one of them targeting the Green Zone. The VP is expected to pressure the Iraqi government to pass laws expanding regional governments' power and distributing revenues from oil. Cheney will travel next to Oman, Saudi Arabia, Israel, the West Bank, and Turkey.