Reports that President Obama is resigned to ending the occupation of Iraq in December began pouring in yesterday, and continued today with claims that combat brigades are preparing to leave ahead of schedule.
Whether this is true or not, of course, remains to be seen. The Obama Administration has vigorously denied the idea, insisting that they have not made any decisions and the discussion is “still ongoing.”
Iraq’s government is mostly willing to approve keeping troops in the country, but insists they be confined to on-base training missions, and has ruled out the sort of blanket immunity US troops currently enjoy. This has been rejected by the US, which insists it must have immunity.
A number of hawkish lawmakers and politicains have already loudly condemned the idea of leaving, and many are insisting Obama’s claimed acceptance of the idea of leaving proves he isn’t sufficiently hawkish.
Yet the denials and the “discussions” suggest that the reports might be part of the ongoing diplomatic effort to convince the Iraqi government to once again cave in to US demands. Whether they do or not remains to be seen.
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