Afghanistan Status of Forces Talks Bogging Down on Night Raids

By: Tuesday February 21, 2012 9:35 am

The Administration has been negotiating for almost a year with the Afghan government over a post-2014 presence, after combat operations are handed over to the Afghans (this could come as early as the end of 2013). This is the second major negotiation with a foreign government over a continuing military presence that the Obama Administration [...]

Maliki Cements Acceptance of Post-Withdrawal Military Trainers in Iraq

By: Wednesday November 30, 2011 12:55 pm

Joe Biden wrapped up his two-day trip to Iraq today, promoting a new phase in US-Iraqi relations. But that phase, contrary to popular myth, will include US military troops on the ground throughout the country: Iraq’s prime minister indicated on Wednesday that he was open to the eventual return of American troops as trainers, underscoring [...]

Biden Enters Iraq to Negotiate “Continued American Presence”

By: Tuesday November 29, 2011 9:35 am

We knew that Joe Biden was scheduled to visit Turkey and Greece this week, but while he was in the region, he swung over to Iraq. Vice President Biden made an unannounced trip to Baghdad on Tuesday to meet with Iraqi leaders and American troops as the deadline for a draw down of U.S. forces [...]

Trainers, Marines, Troops Everywhere; More US Deployments Around the Globe

By: Wednesday November 16, 2011 1:35 pm

I noticed yesterday that military leaders appearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee let slip that the withdrawal of all US troops from Iraq would include some not-withdrawals. In fact, a handful would be left behind as trainers. The New York Times writes that up: Some United States forces will remain as military trainers on [...]

Maliki Concurs: Lack of Legal Immunity Forced Withdrawal in Iraq

By: Monday October 24, 2011 11:20 am

We didn’t really need more evidence of this, but the Iraqi Prime Minister confirmed today that the reason American troops will leave Iraq at the end of the year has everything to do with legal immunity: Nouri al-Maliki, Iraq’s prime minister, said Saturday that negotiations breaking down over whether U.S. soldiers would be protected from [...]

President Obama Announces Full Withdrawal of US Troops from Iraq

By: Friday October 21, 2011 10:00 am

The President has announced the full withdrawal of US military troops from Iraq. This was put out a week ago unofficially, and then Defense Secretary Leon Panetta (who’s a terrible Defense Secretary, by the way) tried half-heartedly to walk it back. But the decision has now been made. Earlier this week there was some hope, [...]

Panetta’s Walk-Back on Iraq Lacking in the Walking Back Department

By: Tuesday October 18, 2011 10:22 am

The trial balloon yo-yo is a favored tactic of the Obama Administration. They will leak a bit of information, see what kind of reaction they get, and then give a public denial. This is what has happened with the news that the White House will withdraw all military troops from Iraq at the end of [...]

US to Withdraw All Troops from Iraq

By: Saturday October 15, 2011 6:14 pm

The Associated Press reports that the Obama Administration has abandoned plans to keep military troops in Iraq beyond the December 2011 deadline. The Administration could not secure immunity from prosecution for its troops operating in the country, so they’ve decided to bug out instead. A substantial amount of personnel will remain at the US Embassy [...]

Iraq Makes Offer to US on Post-2011 Trainers

By: Wednesday October 12, 2011 8:55 am

According to McClatchy, Iraq’s government has made its request for 5,000 US trainers after 2011 to help with ongoing security needs: Iraq has requested that more than 5,000 U.S. military trainers stay on past the formal U.S. withdrawal date of Dec. 31, and it’s awaiting a “yes or no” from the United States, according to [...]

Post-2011 Military Presence in Iraq Falters on Question of Immunity

By: Sunday October 9, 2011 9:47 am

A few things have become clear about the post-2011 Iraq operation for US military forces. First, the Iraqi leadership wants a training force to stay in the country to help Iraqi security forces, particularly the air force and border patrol. Second, they want that training mission to be totally confined to Iraqi bases, and they [...]

Iraqi Foreign Minister: Small US Training Mission Eyed for Post-2011 Iraq

By: Wednesday September 28, 2011 10:18 am

In the latest twist to the will-they-or-won’t-they withdraw all American troops from Iraq after December, the Iraqi foreign minister said today that there would be some post-2011 training mission approved by the Iraqi government.   That may or may not be consistent with the preferred troop levels the Obama Administration leaked publicly. With a year-end [...]

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