"Your country, your problems"
From VOA News:
Supporters of radical Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr celebrated in Badhdad's Sadr City district Tuesday, as a blockade was lifted on orders of Iraq's prime minister. U.S. and Iraqi forces abandoned checkpoints in the Shi'ite neighborhood within hours of Nouri al-Maliki's decree. Al-Sadr had ordered businesses and schools closed Tuesday as part of a strike to oppose the blockade. The blockade was part of a search operation for a missing American soldier, whom U.S. officials believe was kidnapped by Shi'ite militants.
Whether or not the missing American soldier, who was an interpreter, was genuinely kidnapped or AWOL; and whether or not there are other circumstances about the situation in Sadr City we don't know, Maliki's order to dismantle the checkpoints clearly shows how politically powerful Sadr is within the Iraqi government. Sadr's forces expressed their opposition by using the political strike, fair enough, but that does not diminish the fact of his influence.
To have disregarded the PM's order, would have been a politically unthinkable alternative for an America that recognizes Iraq as a legitimate government. They could no more thrust Maliki's order aside than they could any other Head of State's within his own borders. But clearly the identification between the former occupation government and the Iraqi government has begun to wane in the middle of what Donald Rumsfeld described as the process of declining influence. But the necessary consequence of independence is an acceptance of the consequences of independent acts. The liability of a parents for the actions of their children diminishes strictly with adulthood.
It is now possible — or at least it should be — to speak of the American "side of the bargain" as the limit of liability. America can only guarantee giving other nations a chance — as parents can only give their children chances — one can never guarantee absolute outcomes. There are going to be disappointments, but there have been real accomplishments and a lot of unknowables for the future.