WASHINGTON, Nov. 15 (UPI) -- The United States will support the Iraqi government as it develops strategies for a united country, a State Department official told a Senate committee.
"We believe that a successful path forward can still be forged in Iraq," David Satterfield, State Department senior adviser and coordinator for Iraq, told the Senate Armed Services Committee. "As the transition continues to full Iraqi government control, we will stand firmly behind the Iraqi government."
Satterfield said security, political and economic strategies are "inextricably, inseparably linked" to each other.
Iraqis cannot improve their economy or draw upon foreign investment if there's violence in the streets, he said, and reconciliation among the sects and political powers throughout the country won't work if the government can't agree on how to distribute oil revenue or create jobs.
"While all must move forward together, a failure or significant setback in any one area will certainly affect progress in the others," Satterfield said.
Satterfield said insurgent forces and al-Qaida groups are responsible for most of the casualties in Iraq.
"It's increasingly clear that al-Qaida's strategy to undermine the Iraqi government by sowing sectarian conflict has created ... a strategically threatening cycle of violence," he said.