Obama: 'America's war in Iraq will be over' at year's end
U.S. soldiers with the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment participate in a patrol on July 15, 2011, in Iskandariya, Iraq.
October 21st, 2011
01:13 PM ET

Obama: 'America's war in Iraq will be over' at year's end

[Updated at 1:13 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama, announcing Friday that "the rest of our troops will come home by the end of the year," said: "After nearly nine years, America's war in Iraq will be over."

The new partnership with Iraq will be "strong and enduring" after U.S. troops leave the country, Obama said in the White House briefing room. The United States will continue its interest in a strong, stable Iraq after U.S. troops leave, the president said.

"Today I can say that our troops in Iraq will definitely be home for the holidays," Obama said.

About 39,000 U.S. troops are in Iraq, and the U.S. had wanted to keep from 3,000 to 5,000 troops in Iraq past 2011 to aid in training and security. But the current Status of Forces Agreement with Iraq dictates the U.S. troops leave by year's end, and the United States and Iraq had been unable to come to an agreement on key issues regarding legal immunity for U.S. troops who would remain in Iraq, effectively ending discussion of maintaining a significant American force presence beyond 2011.

Of the 39,000 troops in Iraq, only about 150, a negligible force, will remain to assist in arms sales.

The negotiations were strained following WikiLeaks' release of a diplomatic cable that alleged Iraqi civilians, including children, were killed in a 2006 raid by American troops rather than in an airstrike as initially reported by the U.S. military.

U.S. troops have already started the drawdown - a brigade from Fort Bliss, Texas, that was originally scheduled to be among the very last to leave Iraq was being pulled out of the country months ahead of its planned departure, military officials told CNN last week.

[Updated at 12:47 p.m. ET] The scheduled departure of virtually all U.S. troops from Iraq by the end of the year will allow the United States to "say definitively that the Iraq war is over," a White House official said Friday.

[Initial post] Virtually all U.S. troops will be out of Iraq by the end of the year as the current Status of Forces Agreement with Iraq dictates, a U.S. official told CNN Friday.

A small number of U.S. troops will be attached to the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.

This month, the United States and Iraq had been unable to come to an agreement on key issues regarding legal immunity for U.S. troops who would remain in Iraq after the end of the year, effectively ending discussion of maintaining a significant American force presence beyond 2011.

About 39,000 U.S. troops are in Iraq, and the U.S. wanted to keep from 3,000 to 5,000 troops in Iraq past 2011.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to make a statement about Iraq around 12:45 p.m. Friday, according to a White House official.

FULL STORY
soundoff (1,032 Responses)
  1. James

    If the Iraqi government would've given troops immunity there would still be thousands left after the deadline. But of course Obama is taking credit for bringing the troops home...what a joke.

    October 21, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thanks to Wikileaks

      Exactly. Obama wanted to stay, but that awful Wikileaks ruined his plan. Well, I suppose we can pull out whatever toenails Manning has left to make up for it.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  2. ooh rah

    Way to go Mr. President, it is about time. This is a nice step toward cutting unnecessary spending too 🙂

    October 21, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  3. jordan

    1,000's of US Lives lost or wounded badly in either mind or body.
    More Deaths to the Iraqis than the whole time of Saddam's Leadership
    Billions upon billions upon Billions of our US Money Wasted.

    Get the F$CK out Of Afghanistan Now !!!
    This Government is totally Corrupt.

    October 21, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  4. April Garlow

    Gotta love the media spin-first of all Obama didn't order troops out -the legitimate ruler of Iraq-made the decision–Second Obama had no choice-He gives Bush blame constantly–so he should tell the truth –he had to withdraw troops by the end of the year according to a treaty signed by Bush with the leaders of Iraq–Third he spent months trying to extend the deadline–trying to keep troops there-but was told NO!

    October 21, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  5. s kel

    PAULR50,DAN FROM DENVER,BART ...MORE RIGHT WING LOUSERS THAT I WOULD LOVE TO SLAP!

    October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • 00hillbilly

      Your just too cool

      October 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • usmc1

      Like to see you try

      October 21, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Master

      @usmc1 Where do you live?

      October 21, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  6. simon

    It is not a war, it is an unjustified invasion. Let's not forget that!

    October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  7. 00hillbilly

    All 6 people that will vote for Obama are being payed to post here. the rest know the facts just say no to democrats and republicans unless you just want to keep being stupid!

    October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big_D

      We are not being paid and you do protest too much. How much are you being paid to blog against your own interest? I hope it is worth more than your soul.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • 00hillbilly

      Big_D As you can see I'm not for democrats or republicans I'm AWAKE thank you

      October 21, 2011 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • 00hillbilly

      Big_D ONE MORE THINK I'M NOT BEING PAID I"M BEING ROBBED THAT WHY I POST

      October 21, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Michael

    I can't wait to get back home!!!! ETS OCT 2012 GI BILL HERE I COME!!!

    October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big_D

      Welcome home, it is long overdue.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sam Crow

      Thanks for all you do for us and this country. Glad to see that you guys are coming home, that is great news

      October 21, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Uhmerican

      Thank you for your service, welcome home.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chandler

      Your country welcomes you back with open arms! Thank you to all of our troops, we can't wait to have you home!

      October 21, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Christopher

      Thank you for your service to our Country

      October 21, 2011 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Big_D

    We need to end the occupations. Our endless war is so hopeless the service buried more people from suicide than combat last year. POWER TO THE PEACEFUL!!

    October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarshallM

      Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Matthew 5:9

      October 21, 2011 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  10. veteran

    god bless obama

    October 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      God bless him? wasn't he the guy who got elected because he promised over and over again that he would withdraw troops immediately. shame on you and your ignorance. ron paul 2012

      October 21, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Vgarcia

    THANK YOU MR. PRESIDENT,

    October 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Windy City Red

    Bin Laden gone. Gaddafi gone. Mubarak gone. Our troops out of Iraq. Not too bad, Mr. President. Not too bad at all.

    October 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • cvf

      Good work thank to Bush.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Uhmerican

      cvf – Who cares who we give credit to? Success is success. Now let's just get our men and women home and concentrate of BUILDING America, not tearing it down.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  13. edvhou812

    The Second America/Iraq War is over, again.

    October 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Magic

    I've been watching Republican Faux Noise channel to see how they're reporting this topic...They're bashing Obama..LOL!!! When will these goof balls learn?

    October 21, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Orchid333

      They won't. they're paid to oppose any Democrat for any reason. It's crazy. And even crazier that so many people believe their bullsh**.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarshallM

      In a word: never.

      October 21, 2011 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Looking Glass

    A good look Mr. President! We see your potential as a great and true leader of the free world. Now if the party of "No" would get out of your way on the domestic issues, like the economy, we can hit the ball out of the park . . . Home run! Obama 2012.

    October 21, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
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