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News Analysis: U.S. pullout from Iraq, political decision or not?

(Xinhua)

13:07, October 22, 2011

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at a press conference at the White House in Washington D.C., the United States, Oct. 21, 2011. Obama on Friday announced all U.S. troops stationed in Iraq will pull out by the end of the year, and the Iraq War will be over. (Xinhua/Zhang Jun)

WASHINGTON, Oct. 21 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday announced all U.S. troops will be out of Iraq by the end of this year, making good one of his main campaign promises. But the decision also renewed speculation as to whether the Middle East country's central government and the fledgling security forces will be up to the task of keeping the country safe and together, and Obama's Republican opponents have already begun to paint the decision as a political one.

THE DECISION

The withdrawal decision is in line with a security agreement inked by former president George W. Bush and the Iraqi side, which commits U.S. drawdown to complete by Dec. 31, 2011. But it was widely "understood" that the two sides would enter into a new agreement that would allow some U.S. forces to stay beyond that date.

Kenneth Pollack, director of Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution, argued that Iraqi leaders have become ambivalent, if not "downright hostile," to a residual U.S. military presence as time went by, because the proposed 3,000 troops wouldn't be adequate to perform the tasks the about 40,000 U.S. forces in Iraq are performing until now.

Furthermore, Pollack noted that U.S. military presence has grown increasingly burdensome to Iraqi leaders, as U.S. generals challenge Iraqis' interpretation of events, take actions unilaterally, and hinder their consolidation of power. All could explain their reluctance to grant U.S. soldiers immunity next year, a deal breaker that is said to have prompted Obama's decision.

Denis McDonough, Obama's deputy national security advisor, told reporters at the White House that the two sides did talk about the immunity issue, but the decision to withdrawal was not based on it. He said the decision is reflective of both sides' views of "the kind of relationship both nations want to have."

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ari at 2011-10-23175.140.139.*
".. Political Decision, Or Not?"That"s a pretty lousy and low class English for a paper that purports to cater to a global audience or readership. It makes a fool of China. I wonder who are the "consultants" advising the ignorant management and making a fool of them without their knowing.
cleareye at 2011-10-2271.255.93.*
US is like the relatives in some Asian countrie: When she gets into your home, she will never leave.
  

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