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Iraq’s wildly unpopular prime minister Nouri al-Maliki is hunkering down in Baghdad, refusing to heed public calls to step down. Iraq’s president increased the stakes by appointing Dr. Haider al-Abadi to be the country’s new prime minister.
Maliki blasted the move, accusing president Fouad Massoum of violating Iraq’s constitution and denouncing moves by Washington to shore up Abadi.
Interrupting his ill-timed vacation on Martha’s Vineyard, Obama praised American air strikes on ISIL and issued a pro forma statement supporting the new government.