Thai Prime Minister threatens pull-out of Troops
The Thai prime minister said Wednesday that the 447 Thai troops at Karbala would be pulled out of the country if they appeared to be in danger. Most of them are medics and engineers, and they are under Polish command. UPI reported, “Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra told the panel that while Thai soldiers were safe, he would not allow them to risk “mortal danger.”” I’d say that the coalition of the willing is pretty shaky if troops are only being supplied on the condition that their safety be guaranteed. Since Karbala has become more dangerous in the past month, the Thais may well follow through. Attacks on Bulgarian troops in Karbala have also provoked heated discussions in Sophia about whether they should be withdrawn. With the collapse of the deal to bring in the Turks, and the increasingly dim possibility of troops coming from South Asia, the Bush administration now risks the pull-out of the little contingents supplied by countries like Thailand if the security situation does not improve. In a separate development, Kenya formally declined to send troops without a stronger UN resolution; one member of the Kenya parliament asked the government to save the country from a “US dictatorship” by refusing to assist it in Iraq.