The Washington Post

McGurk, denied Iraq ambassadorship, gets top State job

A U.S. Blackhawk helicopter hovers over the former palace of ousted Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, which later became for a time the American embassy. (Hussein Malla/AP)

Loop Fans may remember our report a year ago that the Obama administration had penciled in Brett H. McGurk, a talented aide on the Bush II National Security Council staff and then a special adviser to President Obama, to be the next ambassador to Iraq.

But the eventual nomination stalled in the Senate and McGurk withdrew three months later — after news reports revealed a racy e-mail exchange that he had in 2008 with a Wall Street Journal reporter when both were working in Baghdad. (The couple later married.)

McGurk has been serving as a senior Iraq advisor at the State Department since then. Now, foreign policy blogger Laura Rozen reports, McGurk is likely to be named deputy assistant secretary for Iraq and Iran.

A good job — and no Senate confirmation required.

Al Kamen, an award-winning columnist on the national staff of The Washington Post, created the “In the Loop” column in 1993.


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