Iraq: February 4, 2003


While the United States hoped to train several thousand Iraqi exiles as interpreters and negotiators for their combat troops, screening the candidates has yielded far fewer viable candidates. Many of the volunteers had spotty political backgrounds, or no verifiable background at all (meaning they might be working for Saddam.) Most likely, the screening standards will be loosened up.

Iranian media report that up to a thousand American troops and CIA agents are in northern (Kurdish controlled) Iraq, with some 50 more arriving each day. The US has been silent about operations in northern Iraq, but American journalists have seen armed Americans in the area. 


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