Shi’ite Groups Welcome US Pledge to End Iraq Combat

Biden stops short of agreeing to pullout

President Biden’s Monday declaration that the US combat operation in Iraq will be over by year’s end was short of what some Iraqis were hoping would be a commitment for a full withdrawal.

By and large the Shi’ite groups in Iraq are still quite happy with what they got, seeing an end to US combat operations as a positive step toward the restoration of Iraqi sovereignty after a long occupation.

Key Shi’ite clerics are seeing Biden’s comments as success for Kadhimi’s visit to DC, saying more week needs to be done to get the US to leave entirely, but that this was a big step, as the US moves from combat to training in Iraq.

Iraqis have been pushing for an end to the US military presence since the assassination of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad. At the time, then-President Trump rejected the idea of leaving, though recent talks suggest the US is warming up to a more limited presence.

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.