SM: "This war's about to significantly change."
President Bush arrives for a farewell tour of Iraq. (Oh, so many comments that could be made right here!) Michael appeared on Sunday Morning to describe the arrival ceremony and expected meetings with Iraqi leaders.
TJ HOLMES: So glad you could be with us today. We will start in Iraq. President Bush has made it to that country, he's there right now, expected to be his farewell visit. He has made four visits all together, now. CNN's Michael Ware joins us now from Baghdad.
Michael, hello to you and tell us, do we know what is on his plate? We know a lot's on that plate, just speaking in general, but as far as this trip goes, what's on his agenda?
MICHAEL WARE, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, I suspect there's more on the plate than he wishes to be handing over to another administration, that's for sure. Well, what we know is that President Bush landed roughly about two hours ago, which is late in the afternoon here in Baghdad.
Now, once he got off the tarmac, there was an arrival ceremony, and he was met by the Iraqi president, Jalal Talabani. Now, from that arrival ceremony, it's believed he has a series of meetings with Iraq's senior leadership, the Sunni, the Shi'a vice presidents, the head of the Kurdistan regional government, a separate sort of mini-state in the north, an important American ally, and of course he will be meeting with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.
It's believed there will then be a ceremony to mark the signing between Washington and Baghdad of the Status of Forces Agreement. So, this trip, really, is to celebrate, according to the White House officials, the signing of this agreement between Iraq and America, and to mark how this war is about to significantly change. Iraq's going into the driver's seat.
What they will not tell us, of course is what that's costing America. And there's a lot bubbling under the surface. So, I would not go popping the champagne corks, yet - TJ.
HOLMES: Michael, you talk there about everything sounds celebratory, ceremonial, but is anything substantial going to come out of this, and are the Iraqis pretty much looking forward to the next administration and really holding off and waiting, they know they got somebody else they're about to have to deal with?
WARE: Yeah, I mean, in many senses, we now have a caretaker in the White House. And let's face reality here, President-elect Obama campaigned on ending the war in Iraq. Well, in many ways, the documents that President Bush is here to celebrate have already ended large chunks of the war, so -- and it wasn't done on U.S. terms. Yes, they're going to dress it up and make it sound pretty, but the terms of these agreements wrap U.S. combat troops up in such knots, so America's surrendered its ability to wage war. Nonetheless, the champagne will be flowing -- TJ.
HOLMES: The champagne flying, that sounds strange that champagne might be flying, but yes a farewell tour from the president. A last hurrah there. Michael Ware for us, certainly won't be your has hurrah in Iraq. We will see you again. Appreciate you.