| Democratic 2008 hopeful Barack Obama Tuesday called for talks with Iran on stabilizing Iraq, hours after the top US war general said Tehran was the greatest threat to democracy in the war-torn nation. |
Obama also suggested the best the United States may now be able to achieve in Iraq was a "messy, sloppy status quo" and argued the Bush administration's goals for Iraq would require a US troop commitment for up to 30 years.
The Illinois senator, battling Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination, told war commander General David Petraeus and US ambassador to Baghdad Ryan Crocker that a "diplomatic surge" was needed "that includes Iran."
"Because if (Iraqi prime minister Nuri al-Maliki) can tolerate normal neighbor-to-neighbor relations in Iran, then we should be talking to them as well," Obama said in a crucial Senate Foreign Relations committee hearing.