US Military: Troops in Iraq Dip Below 100,000

Lowest Level Since 2003 Invasion

According to the US military, the troop level in Iraq has dipped slightly below 100,000, the first time the level has fallen this low since the 2003 invasion. The level officially stands at 98,000.

For much of the invasion, the US kept 100,000 or slightly more troops in the nation, but diversions to Afghanistan have dipped the level to a new low. During the campaign, President Obama claimed he would remove all troops from Iraq by May 2010.

This clearly has been abandoned, but the Pentagon says they remain “on track” to have the troop level down to around 50,000 by August, a level which the Obama Administration has said they intend to maintain this level “indefinitely” to protect American interests in the region.

Multiple high profile bombings have drawn speculation that the drawdown to 50,000 could be delayed. The election delays and a prospective Sunni boycott could also fuel sectarian tensions.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.