Withdrawal Headlines

Here’s the headline on Yahoo News: Iraq, US agree no foreign troops after 2011: PM

And the lede:

Iraqi Premier Nuri al-Maliki said on Monday Washington and Baghdad have agreed there will be no foreign forces in Iraq after 2011, setting a timeline for a US withdrawal from the war-torn country.

If one takes the time to read down a ways, though, they’ll see

[Chief Iraqi negotiator Mohammed al-Haj] Hammoud said that while all issues had been addressed in the deal there was a possibility US troops could leave before 2011 or remain beyond the target date.

“There is a provision that says the withdrawal could be done even before 2011 or extended beyond 2011 depending on the (security) situation,” he said.

Even if the withdrawal is completed by 2011, some US troops could remain to train Iraqi security forces, he said

Whoa. Sounds basically like the same old thing that we’ve been pushing for all along, doesn’t it? And though the headline seems to imply that it’s a done deal, it is not.

This fact seems to be lost on one of the fine folks at Reddit: Bush surrenders

No doubt a lot of folks are going to claim the Bush is doing exactly what he criticized Obama, Reid, Pelosi, and other Democrats for wanting to do. But those making such claims are going to be missing (or conveniently ignoring) the fact that the “deadline” being discussed here is completely based upon the situation on the ground and was not brought up by either the US military or the Iraqi government until after the security situation improved drastically. The “deadline” Obama et al. were pushing for was one to be enforeced REGARDLESS of the situation on the ground and was brought up while the security situation was a bad one and neither the US military nor the Iraqi government were talking about US troops leaving.

Don’t expect a headline about that little fact, though.


  1. Why the hell did we agree with this? We should and deserve to keep some forces and aircraft at an airbase or two under our control.

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