House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) today called on President Bush to declassify information regarding plans for U.S. military bases in Iraq, expressing concern about speculation of permanent bases.

The administration's critics have speculated that Bush intends to establish permanent bases, as the administration pushes for a security deal between the U.S. and Iraq. Ambassador Ryan Crocker, the top U.S. diplomat in Iraq, has denied any such plans.

In a letter to Bush today, Waxman asked that "in light of these [Crocker's] statements, I respectfully request that you exercise your authority under Executive Order 12958 to declassify information regarding the plans for military bases in Iraq."

"Mr. President, many Americans believe that a plan exists to establish military bases in Iraq that will remain indefinitely.