As a followup to the purported SOFA document that I flagged over at Iraq Oil Report, McClatchy (via Kevin Drum) has now posted a “translation from the Arabic” version, which seems to match it. (I didn’t go through word for word, but I checked it against a few key paragraphs.)
So while the Bush administration was busy trying to keep this document under close wraps, not just from the American public but from the American Congress as well, the Iraqi government was busy leaking it to as many Western news outlets that it could find.
Now, I’ve seen some quotes from Ike Skelton expressing skepticism on the deal, particularly about the jurisdiction question. So it could be Baghdad was counting on some sort of limited criticism of the document Stateside to enhance the deal’s credibility among Iraqis. But it seems like a risky gambit, because if any sort of broad opposition forms against it, there’s neither time nor wiggle room left to come up with a replacement.