U.S. ‘Is Confident’ In Iraqi Security Forces’ Capability

State Department spokesman in Baghdad Chris Hensmann yesterday reiterated the U.S. government’s position that the United States is open to maintaining a military presence in Iraq past 2011. “We are open to discussion with the Iraqi government [about] a future U.S. presence,” he said, but added that such discussions “have not yet taken place.” But at the same time, Hensmann also said the U.S. has confidence in the Iraqi Security Forces’ capability. “The United States is confident that Iraqi security forces’ capacity will continue to grow. There are challenges but I think the Iraqi people can be proud of their security forces,” he said.