Nouri al-who?

Bush backs away from the man he once called the "right guy" for Iraq.

Published August 21, 2007 6:54PM (EDT)

George W. Bush on whether he has confidence in Nouri al-Maliki, Nov. 30, 2006: "He's the right guy for Iraq, and we're going to help him, and it's in our interest to help him, for the sake of peace."

George W. Bush on whether he still has confidence in Nouri al-Maliki, April 20, 2007: "I believe this current government under Prime Minister Maliki is committed to building a strong democracy. That's my judgment, having talked to him. I've watched a man begun to grow in office."

George W. Bush on whether the Iraqi parliament should oust Nouri al-Maliki, Aug. 21, 2007: "That's up to the Iraqis to make that decision, not American politicians. The Iraqis will decide. They have decided they want a constitution. They have elected members to their parliament. And they will make the decisions, just like democracies do."

By Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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George W. Bush Iraq Iraq War Middle East War Room