The end of the Iraq War
August 25, 2008 Leave a comment
BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said on Monday that an agreement had been reached in negotiations on a security pact with the United States to end any foreign military presence in Iraq by the end of 2011.
“There is an agreement actually reached, reached between the two parties on a fixed date which is the end of 2011 to end any foreign presence on Iraqi soil,” Maliki said in a speech to tribal leaders in the Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone.
(update: The BBC has more on the story)
It looks like the US is finally recognizing that Afghanistan is a priority. According to Richard Holbrooke, former ambassador to the United Nations, on March 30, 2008:
The conflict in Afghanistan will be far more costly and much, much longer than Americans realize. This war, already in its seventh year, will eventually become the longest in American history, surpassing even Vietnam.
And from McClatchy on July 31, 2008, reporting from Fubar, Afghanistan:
There’s military slang that seemingly applies to the situation on the ground in Afghanistan today. The operative acronym is FUBAR…
Gen. Barry McCaffrey, who retired from the U.S. Army with four stars and a chest full of combat medals including two Distinguished Service Crosses, says we can’t shoot our way out of Afghanistan, and the two or three or more American combat brigades proposed by the two putative nominees for president are irrelevant.
… It’ll take a quarter-century of nation-building, road and bridge building, the building of a better-trained and better-armed Afghan National Police and National Army and the eradication of a huge opium farming industry to achieve a good outcome in Afghanistan, McCaffrey wrote in his report to leaders at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.