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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rumsfeld Arrives in Baghdad

BAGHDAD -- U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, in Baghdad on Wednesday for an unannounced visit to U.S. commanders, said security in Iraq now depends as much on the Iraqi government's political success as on beating the insurgency militarily.

Rumsfeld arrived in Iraq the day after suicide bombers killed 16 people outside the main entrance of the heavily fortified Green Zone government compound, where he was due to hold his meetings. That attack coincided with a parliamentary session at which one lawmaker warned that civil war was close.

"The solution to that is not military," he said. "The solution is a reach out" to Sunni Muslims, a minority in mainly Shiite Muslim Iraq.

Sectarian violence has left Iraq unable to make decisions that might allow the United States to reduce its troop levels -- a critical issue for the Bush administration at home where antiwar sentiment and calls for a withdrawal timetable have grown in a congressional election year.

"We haven't gotten to that point," Rumsfeld said on troop cuts.