US Combat Missions in Iraq Will Continue After ‘Pullout’

Obama Pledge to Withdraw Combat Troops Won't End Combat by Troops

by Jason Ditz, February 25, 2009

Just one day after reports came out regarding the Obama Administration’s 19 month withdrawal plan from Iraq, the Pentagon was detailing the enormous number of troops that would remain on the ground after Obama ostensibly fulfills his promise to remove all combat troops, and all the combat they’ll be engaging in.

After the “pullout,” as many as 50,000 troops will remain on the ground, and despite being touted as a withdrawal of combat troops, Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell conceded that some would continue to “conduct combat operations,” and Iraq would still be considered a war zone. The rest would be what he described as “enablers.”

President Obama promised a 16-month pullout from Iraq during the campaign, but backed off the promise under pressure from the military. Since then he has spoken of a “responsible military drawdown,” but even as he is set to officially unveil this new plan the question of when the troops will actually be out of Iraq entirely seems like it will remain unanswered.

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