National security expert: Obama could lose Iraq

Iraq’s Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is set to meet with President Obama in Washington, D.C. this week. Al-Maliki is expected to present himself as a mediator between Iran and the U.S., while also asking the president to send U.S. military supplies to Iraq.

A senior U.S. official said the delivery of F-16 fighter jets to Iraq is on track for next fall, according to Reuters.

Professor Emeritus at University of Michigan and author of “Arab Rebels and Iranian Dissidents” Raymond Tanter sat down with Fox News’ KT McFarland to discuss the meeting between al-Maliki and Obama and what’s at stake.

“What is he trying to do? He’s trying to get some Apache helicopters. He’s trying to get F-16 aircrafts from the U.S.,” said Tanter. “But what is he giving in return? He’s allowing the Iranian regime to send on the ground arms into Syria.”

Tanter speculates al-Maliki is taking a charm offensive with both the Iranians and Americans.

“He’s playing footsy with the Iranians,” said Tanter. “He’s not doing what he needs to do in order to take care of the Iranian opposition in Iraq.”

Tanter also fears al-Maliki, a Shiite, is causing a deepening rift  between the country’s two Muslim sects.

“He’s going after his vice president, who is a Sunni, and causing the Sunni-Shiite split within Iraq to exacerbate. So this is a big problem,” said Tanter. “If President Obama doesn’t crack down on Nouri al-Maliki, it will be Obama who lost Iraq.”

Watch the full interview with Raymond Tanter in the video above.