July 10th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

What should U.S. do if violence continues to escalate in Iraq?


Iraqis stand outside a destroyed building the morning after two car bombs were detonated within minutes of each other on the outskirts of Mosul. Nine people were killed and 22 wounded in the blasts that came just over a week after U.S. forces pulled out of Iraqi towns and cities. (PHOTO CREDIT: MUJAHED MOHAMMED/AFP/Getty Images)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

This has been a particularly deadly week in Iraq.

Today was the third day of deadly violence in a row. Bomb blasts and even a drive-by shooting have left 75 people dead and more than 200 wounded across the country. This is the worst violence there since U.S. troops pulled back from major cities on June 30th.

It only took one week for the violence to flare up, and some say it was expected. The U.S. military wanted to keep combat troops in Mosul past the deadline for withdrawal but the Iraqi government said no. There would be no exceptions to the security agreement they had with the U.S.

The State Department also raised concerns following the handing over to Iraqi authorities by the U.S. military of five Iranian officials, who have been held since 2007 for allegedly helping Shiite insurgents. They are seen as potential troublemakers.

There are still 130,000 U.S. troops in Iraq but most of them are on bases outside the major cities with only a few assigned in the cities for training Iraqi personnel. All American military forces are scheduled to be out of Iraq by the end of 2011. Then what?

While some Iraqi's are glad to no longer have U.S. troops patrolling their streets, others fear the kind of violence that has reappeared over the past few days.

Here’s my question to you: What should the U.S. do if violence continues to escalate in Iraq?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 5pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.

Filed under: Iraq
soundoff (146 Responses)
  1. Randy from Salt Lake City

    Who cares? As long as they don't mess with the oil wells and pipelines.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:40 pm |
  2. Adam Thousand Oaks, CA

    We have to redeploy troops, obviously. This has always been the problem with publicizing a timetable for withdrawl. The bad elements will just wait us out. We cannot afford to let extremists turn that country upside down and devolve into civil war. Nor can we risk another maniac grabbing power and turning Iraq into another Iran. We need to pull our guys out, but only after the Iraqi's have stabilized their country.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  3. John in Virginia

    Don't ask me – ask Obama. He was so keen to pull out our troops, let him figure it out.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  4. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    Come home and quit letting our young men die for nothing absolutely nothing Jack..............just like we did in 1969, 58,000 dead kids for nothing.
    Just think how strong we could have built America with those trillions,
    for our children and health care.We seem to have this idea that if we spill blood it will be good.Well that is fine if we are protecting our country out right................but not following shadows to an endless

    July 10, 2009 at 12:56 pm |
  5. Melissa

    Nothing. Let the Iraqi's deal with Iraq. Its none of the US's business. Bring ALL the troops home, and let the Iraqi's have Iraq.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  6. Greg in Cabot Arkansas

    Our troops should proceed with their planned withdraw, keep thier heads down and try not to get hurt or killed in the process ...period..
    The time has long passed when the Iraqi people were supposed to stand up so the U.S. troops could stand down. If they haven't been fully trained by now, it ain't ever going to happen.
    I went from the college classroom to the jungles of Viet Nam in less than 6 months and I survived.....why.... because I wanted to!!.....
    If Iraq wants peace....they need to find it......we will never be able to GIVE it to them.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  7. Michael M Phoenix AZ

    We can thank GW Bush for this one then.....there was no violence with insurgent groups under Saddam was there? Bet we end up going right back into the cities to "clean" them up again. Apparently the citizens can't operate under a "democracy".

    July 10, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  8. JD in NH

    Remove the rest of our troops. The Iraqis have to step up sometime and despite the fact we caused the mess, we haven't got the human or monetary resources to continue our atonement.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:00 pm |
  9. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    Continue the pull back........the violence will happen no matter what we do at this point, no sense putting Americans in the middle of it. We have made a complete mess of Iraq, and I dare say that history will judge the Bush admeninstration harshly for going in there.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  10. Danny ,Freeman,NC

    We should have all our service personnel redeployed to Kuwait immediately and allow the Iraqi people their SELF determination.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  11. Kelby, In Houston, Texas

    We should let them handle it. We should not have gont to Iraq in the first place. We can not get out fast enough. They are bombing each other more than they are bombing U.S. forces Iraqis have police and other security forces. They should be able to take care of themselves. We have other problems to worry about, like AfPak.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  12. John from Alabama

    Jack: I believe we do nothing. Let the Iraqi Police and Military handle the situation. The American Military should defend their positions and continue the missions of monitoring the roads outside the cities. We must give the Iraqis the opportunity to succeed or fail on their on merit. The three factions are the same ones when we entered Iraq: Shai, Sunni, and Kurd. They must unite or face constant violence and death of their children.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  13. John G from Boston

    Nothing! Absolutely nothing it time to go while the going good!

    July 10, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  14. John Webster, Aldergrove BC Canada

    Is the real question ‘should the US finish what Bush started or just look the other way? The idea of letting them sort out their own future seems democratic and isn’t that the stated idea of going there in the first place? The absence of the western liberators may just be what is required to stop the lunacy there.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:29 pm |
  15. PHIL

    Not a darn thing. They have government, they have police, they have military. Its time they cut the cord. Did you notice all the thanks they gave U.S forces for their efforts and their lives. Maybe I missed something, but all I saw was dancing in the streets when our military left.
    I wanted to scream "YOUR WELCOME"


    July 10, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  16. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    We should do what we should have done in the first place, listen to King Abdullah II and back his lead. He speaks the language, he knows the culture, and he has made a habit of being right in the past.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:40 pm |
  17. Jim El Paso Tx.

    We should do Jack just what the Iraqui people want us to do....get out an stay out. It's way past time they decided for themselves if they want to progress or fall back into the tyranni they endured under Sadam.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:41 pm |
  18. ANDRES SAENZ(Albuquerque, NM)

    As a nation, we have already spent hundreds of BILLIONS of dollars in Iraq since 2003 under the Bush administration. We cannot afford to have our troops over there anymore, during a period of time when millions of Americans have lost their jobs and when the world is going through a severe economic recession.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  19. Matt

    Continue the planned departure but only sooner. Centuries of tribal and sectarian strife will not go away because of our costly presence there.


    July 10, 2009 at 1:50 pm |
  20. Ralph

    Get out of the way and Let Iraquis deal with. Enough already!
    Ralph- Corpus Christi, Texas

    July 10, 2009 at 1:51 pm |
  21. Frank from Peterborough

    Troops in Iraq have only accomplished one thing and that is to take Americans closer to where the Terrorists live so they make easier targets.

    The terrorists don't have to expend as much money and planning as they would if they had to physically come to the United States to kill and injure Americans.

    Perhaps it's time for America to spend more money domestically on the welfare of their citizens and get out of the mess that is little more than a big hole in the sand where the government keeps throwing the taxpayer's dollars.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:52 pm |
  22. Russ in PA

    We should be bringing out all troops now, Immediately. Regardless of the conditions in Iraq. The US can't afford the empire any longer. If politicians believe we should be giving up lives in Iraq, then let them offer their own first. But, no, they didn't have the courage to declare war as required by our Constitution.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:53 pm |
  23. Kimberly Krautter

    Escalating violence in Iraq as the US military begins to draw down was part of the calculus when the Bush adminstration drew up the departure plans. We should stick to that plan and remain in a secondary support role to the Iraqi military and security forces so they can fully stand up and assume their rightful role in their country. That's the only way the Iraqi's will begin to become a sovereign nation again. It has to be of, by and for them for their future and posterity. As Americans that's what we should want for every nation.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:55 pm |
  24. Annie

    How about we send Bush and his gangbangers to clean up the mess they started. And while you're at it, don't forget to include Congress and all those greedy CEOs without those golden parachutes, of course.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:56 pm |
  25. Tina Tx

    Why is it the US the only ones worried about what goes on in the Middle East and yet we live so far from the action? I don't see anyone else who has their panties in a tight knot over the wars in Iraq or Afganistan. It is time for us to leave. They are going to have to fight to get control back over their country. Not our country. Please Obama say we won and leave.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:56 pm |
  26. wanda j brown

    The Iraqi People proclaimed a national holiday when we gave them their country back. They even burned American flags at one time. I say we stay away and let them handle their own problems. We never
    should have been there in the first place and I personally don't think we have much of an allie in those people anyway. Let them deal with their own problems. We need to deal with ours and stop meddling.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:57 pm |
  27. Bizz, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    The Iraq government wanted us out and danced in the streets when we left their cities. We should not go back in and start fighting house to house again, getting more of our soldiers killed. We cannot run back in every time the violence starts to escalate. We already fought the Vietnam war we do not need to do it again. The time has come for the Iraq government to stand up and take control.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:01 pm |
  28. Diane/Allentown PA

    Pull our troops out, and send Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld over to fix it. Condi too. They created this mess, and they're not doing anything right now anyway.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  29. Mark, Bradenton,FL

    Nothing, just withdraw and bring our troops home. We wasted already a fortune for nothing down there.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  30. mp

    The U.S. should do nothing. Leave. Get out. The Iraqi people seem to be happy that we are going to leave. I don't blame them. If my country had been invaded and bombed, I would prefer to get my country back and say goodbye to the invaders who created the tragic mess in the first place.

    mad plato in El Paso

    July 10, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  31. Dean in Macungie,PA

    The question should be "What should the U.S. do when violence escalates in Iraq?"
    The answer to this question is that the U.S. most replace Maliki with a U.S. friendly Suddam (stern leader) and have that person purchase weapons from the U.S. for their Republican Guard (or whatever they want to be known as). In other words let Iraq become what it once was, but U.S. friendly.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  32. Doug - Dallas, TX

    Bring the troops home and let someone else deal with it. You have to be an idiot to think the old rivalries won't start as soon as we're gone. It doesn't matter how long we stay there; another year or 20 years, the violence will continue.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:15 pm |
  33. Remo....Beautiful downtown Pflugerville Texas

    Get the troops out quicker! If the folks in Iraq can't take care of their own business, it's their problem. We've taught, trained, and have had many, many good people die there. Enough is Enough!

    July 10, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  34. Denny from Tacoma, WA

    Provide support and assistance as needed WHEN requested. Otherwise let the Iraqis settle their own disputes. After all it is THEIR country.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  35. Carl D.

    I say just get the hell out of there. Let the people of Iraq take over, they don't want us there anyway. Besides, we can't afford to stay in Iraq any longer, enough is enough of this War for Oil War.
    Carl in Illinois

    July 10, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  36. GREGORY Miami Beach, Fl.

    We should exhaust all diplomatic means to put an to the violence in Iraq. This shoiuld not be our legacy left to the Iraqi people. As far as combat troop, well, we've left enough of our sons & daughters blood in the sand.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:19 pm |
  37. Sandy Hughes

    Well, the U.S. should do nothing. This is the responsiblity of the U.N. We are not the police for the world and the financier of all wars. The United Nations need to do their job for a change. I do impathize with the Iranian people and think they are right but we do not decide or we are not to decide the fate unless it comes through the United Nations.

    Sandy Hughes
    Guntersville, AL

    July 10, 2009 at 2:19 pm |
  38. Peg from NY

    Call Rummy, Dummy and Bozo. They started it so they can run interference now.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:23 pm |
  39. Alex in Seattle

    We should continue to pull out according to the SOFA (Status Of Forces Agreement) that Bush signed with the government of Iraq. We have already wasted too much blood and treasure there in a war lasting longer than WW II. Whatever happens would have happened had we pulled out earlier or now or later. Besides, the common Iraqi consensus is that they want us out of their country.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  40. Michelle Johnson

    Too many of our troops have died in Iraq. The U.S. stayed there too long and should not return. Iraq, Iran, China–these countries all have their own governments and law enforcement. U.S. should not interfere unless the nation poses a direct threat to our country, as in the case of North Korea.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  41. Charles

    Big Brother (The USA) has been there long enough sticking up for little brother. Let the storm winds settle themselves. If by chance that strategy carries poor weather this way, then it is our problem to settle that to the degree it affects us. It is no longer our problem to solve for the Iraquis. They have to decide what their own expectations are and we need to spend less time trying to shape their country to meet our expectations.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  42. Venia PA

    Send bush and cheyney over there to police the streets, seems like a fitting punishment. It's amazing how they've been let off the hook for lying to us in starting this war and bankrupting our coutry to rebuild Iraq. Now that President Obama is trying to rebuild this country the republicans are putting out every lie and attack to obstruct his progress. Better still I send send bush, cheyney and every republican politician over to Iraq.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  43. CJ in Atlanta

    The US should encourage the Iraqi police and armed forces to step it up.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:40 pm |
  44. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    Get out sooner and bring our troops home and then invite Cheney and Bush to move to Baghdad to live in the billion dollar embassy that they built.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:40 pm |
  45. Paul

    The last American out should toss Maliki the keys and quote Edward R. Murrow's famous closing..."Good Night, and Good Luck".

    July 10, 2009 at 2:44 pm |
  46. Mike of Hot Springs.

    Iran is an independent nation. They are not one of our states and they are not in our sphere of influence. We should do what we should have been doing for the past many years. Just watch and see what happens. We are not the savior of the world. Nations should be allowed to chose their own destiny. When conditions get bad enough the people can work for change within. I really fail to see how much good we have done over the years by getting involved.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  47. JC in Georgia

    Make haste...get out quicker.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  48. Billy in Las Vegas

    Grin and IGNORE It, Jack.

    sooner or later the Iraqi people themselves will take care of any terrorist element in their country. we still give them air and logistics support BUT it's there turn for the "face-to-face" fighting.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:53 pm |
  49. Jenna

    What should the U.S. do if violence continues to escalate in Iraq?


    We knew that no matter how long we were there, in Iraq, that once we pulled out they, the Iraqis, would go through a civil war and that is exactly what is happening.

    So much for a secular nation of Iraq now. Expect to see another theocracy like Iran when the dust settles.

    Roseville CA

    July 10, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  50. Amber - Austin, TX

    Continue the draw down. We cannot hold the Iraqi's hands forever. This debacle has gone on long enough. Iraq will struggle to stand on its own – just as the United States did and continues to do every single day. Democracy isn't easy – and if they truly want Democracy in Iraq, then they will fight for it with all they have.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  51. Tony frtom Torrington

    We can look at those who are in charge and say "You are responsible." You left too early and let the people of Iraq and our troops who made the sacrifice down.

    But I doubt that will happen. We will hear that George W. Bush is responsible, just like our current President does daily. Great job if you can get it. The most powerful man in the world, and no accountability....just blame the last guy!

    July 10, 2009 at 2:58 pm |

    I live in Virginia Beach VA.

    It's about time for the Iraqi government and military to take care of their own problems.

    They don't want us there anymore, so when the going get rough, they need to get tough and get going.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:58 pm |
  53. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    The same thing we should have done 8 years ago – get out.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  54. Michael Houston Texas

    Go more covert, deepen intel, find the bad guys and snuff em. CCTV comes to mind.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  55. John in Santa Barbara

    We should make sure that the troops in the Iraqi army are well equipped and well paid, and then make them understand what we mean by "Do or Die."

    July 10, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  56. Aaron Ky

    Identify the source of the violence and deal with it. Sectarian violence between opposing neighborhoods? Insurgent Iranian Revolutionary Guard operatives? Political assasinations fascillitated by a Mullah? All require differrent responses, most of which don't come from the barrell of a gun. DIplomacy and dissarmmament, clear and concise media coverage from an unbiased maybe politically neutral country, and a continued policy of reconcilliation and rewards.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  57. Jeffrey Cohen from LA, California

    Unfortunately we need to just let it be. The kind of violence that is occurring in Iraq has been going on for thousands of years and it will be a long time coming before it ends.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  58. Sam

    The Pottery Barn rule still applies as Gen Powell once explained – you break it your own it.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  59. andyz Lynn, MA

    Putting our troops in a division mass formation, having the troops thumb their noses, learning to say, "I told you so," in Farsi, and boarding aircraft to return to the states or off to Afghanistan. Ciao baby, you wanted this war, congradulations. It's all yours now.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  60. Bob Northern IL

    First . . . . not get too nervous too soon. Keep to the present plan but maybe a bit smaller numbers and stand aside and be alert. Let Iraq try to stablize their country which was never going to be easy or follow OUR schedule.

    Stay alert and watch and give them 2-3 months to see if it slows down or improves. If it doesn't, keep your major arms for now and your stronger forces until your prestated withdrawal date and allow the others to go first. The last month of the withdrawal make at least 2-3 major attacks on the worst areas, Then give it another look while continuing the draw down and decide to maybe NOT draw down to what you first plan but DO draw down and give the troops the break they have earned and need.

    Go cautiously but go and get into Afghanistan where we should have consentrated our efforts from the get-go.

    We are in it and we should do the job we started until we finish it and learn from BOTH locations that ANY struggle looks easier from the outside than it EVER does from the inside. Or, as anyone call tell you, "Hindsight is ALWAYS better than foresight!!"

    July 10, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  61. Jack

    In a word, GETOUT.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:16 pm |
  62. Susan from Twin Falls Idaho

    We should get the heck out of there. We can't police these people. Give everyone over eighteen a rifle and let them work it out. What part of when you’re in a hole stop digging does our government not understand?

    July 10, 2009 at 3:16 pm |
  63. Martin in Shoreline, WA

    Get out as scheduled. We never should have gone in there to begin with. Using the argument that we are freeing the Iraqis is nothing short of treasonous. It is a lie. You cannot force freedom on people. They do not appreciate it. They must win it for themselves, or it isn;t freedom at all.

    Sending Americans to die for other people's freedom is wrong. A people must die for their own freedom, not someone else's. Get us out, and let them die for their own freedom just like we did.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  64. vern-anaheim,ca

    we should do nothing,the iraqui's wanted us out of iraq and so we complied with their wishes.the violence there has gone on for hundreds of years and nothing we can do will prevent it from hapenning again and again.let viet nam be a lesson to us,we lost around 50,000 men there and for what?,the same thing applies to iraq ,we lost better than 4,500 men there and for what?

    July 10, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  65. Terry, Chandler AZ

    Do the same thing televisin viewers will do while seated at home: Watch.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  66. Mike - Boca Raton


    Maybe if we can convert some of the closed GM factories to produce guns we GM may make a profit by selling arms to both sides in Iraq. We should never have gone into a country that has a centuries long history of internal tribal fighting so if our sacrifice in lives and treasure to give them a chance with a non-dictator government isn't enough, have GM sell them arms and let them go at it.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  67. Molly in Austin

    I say just get out of their way! Jack, here is my question to you: Why is the US the police of the world? Oops, forgot, oil, money & greed.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  68. Paul Austin, Texas

    Jack it is sad but we need to let it take it's own course and find it's own outcome. The days of the U.S. being able to mold countries and their peoples are long over. The sad part I mention is the lives and cost of the Iraq war has cost not only the U.S. but also Canada and other friends that have helped us this far. The people of Iraq need to decide what course they want their country to end up as and they need to do it on their own or the world will say see what the U.S. did to Iraq. This violence should be no surprise to anyone.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  69. Ray in Nashville


    The U.S. can't keep spending billions of dollars, and even more important, American lives, propping up a government that cannot stand on it's own. At some point and time, the Iraqis are going to have to stand on their own two feet. I think this is that time.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  70. Joe in MO

    Nothing. What's the alternative? Stay there for the next 150 years, and then when we leave they start killing each other again. That's what those people do.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  71. Steve

    First Option: Bring Bush back. Jeb Bush that is.

    Second Option: Hire 5000 muslim undercover agents (similar to the French Legion mentality), Infiltrate the trouble makers and assinate them. Very simple tactic, problem solved.
    We don't know how to fight wars because of the criticisms of the press. Something has to change if we want to win. We need support and new ideas.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:28 pm |

    Bring them all home. They want us out. No matter how long we stay it is going to escalate, as that is the way they have lived for century's. We should never have gone there in the first place. Their leader is dead, their country is in shambles and they want us out. Many thousands of lives lost over there and over 4000 of our soldiers for nothing.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:32 pm |
  73. Allen L Wenger

    Speed up the withdrawal. Iraq is slipping into a civil war, and the U.S. should not get in the middle of it. The Iraq civil war is not something we can prevent. If we had stayed another 10 years, it would only have delayed the civil war by 10 years. The people of Iraq will need to fight this out and the winner will get to pick the next dictator.

    Mountain Home ID

    July 10, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  74. michael armstrong sr.

    If violance esculates we should do absolutly nothing the middle eastern people are on a death wish let god sort them out .

    July 10, 2009 at 3:36 pm |
  75. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Replace Obama with McCain.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:36 pm |
  76. Rick Medina,OH


    Clearly, the exit of U. S. troops from the Iraqi cities and towns has created a power vacuum. Over the next weeks and months, one can only hope that the Iraqi authorities will emerge with the power to restore order. Otherwise, we face a quagmire that is more diplomatic than military.

    Rick, Medina, OH

    July 10, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  77. Bob

    We should leave and never come back to that ridiculous country. Can i even call it one?

    July 10, 2009 at 3:43 pm |
  78. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Let them fight is out and may the best man win, we've invested enough money in that worthless part of the world, time to get the hell out and stay out.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  79. Ray, Florida

    Nothing Jack,

    The Iraqi Government needs to learn how to stand on their own! No matter when we leave the violence will increase.

    It's like pulling off a band aid the faster the better!

    July 10, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  80. Will from San Jose

    The increase in violence was expected. Various groups from insurgents to just regular criminals are going to test the Iraqi forces. Those forces need to prove to themselves and their communities that they are up to the task. Letting the security forces attempt to handle this on their own means they might fail, but stepping in means they'll never get the chance to show they can succeed.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  81. Chryssa

    Nothing, Jack. It's not our country and we can't afford to fight. They're religious radicals with hundreds of years of conflict behind them and ahead of them. There's nothing we can do about it.

    Boise, ID

    July 10, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  82. cindy

    We need to get out now and continue on the path of exit as President Obama promised during the campaign. Even if we stayed there for another 20 years, Iraq will remain in turmoil. We never had a exit strategy with the previous admninistration and now it's time to go.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  83. bob, oshawa, ontario

    Jack, the U.S. has to impress upon the current Iraqi leadership that it is their responsibility to use trained troops to quell further outbreaks of violence in the cities. One leader or a coalition of leaders has to make it clear to its people that the future prosperity of their country depends on the different factions working in unity. The form of government that emerges from this may evolve into something less than a democracy if that's what it takes. So much for the Bush administration's notion of forcing democracy on a nation that was not suited for this type of government. Basically, the U.S. interfered for oil rights and created a colossal mess. Yet, it seems unlikely that anyone from the Bush government will ever have to stand trial for the repercussions of their mendacious scheming.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  84. T. G. from the virgin islands

    What else can we do? By the end of 2011, the security of Iraq will be the Iraqi Government's problem.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  85. Ann from Charleston S.C.

    The U.S. should do absolutely nothing and let the Iraqis solve their own problems.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:00 pm |
  86. Eric, Flemington, NJ

    I believe we should get out of the way – it's not our country, nor is Afghanistan. It's one thing to support a foreign government or a subgroup within a foreign country; it's quite another to send troops, establish military bases and make a long term committment to highly debatable foreign policy goals and objectives. Have we not learned anything from the Brits and the Soviets?

    July 10, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  87. Richard in Colorado

    Stick to the plan to leave. We could stay there another 100 years and the result would be the same. The religious factions there have been fighting for centuries and nothing we do is going to change their hatred of each other. We need to get out as soon as possible and let them take care of their own problems. Remember, we shouldn't have gone there in the first place.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  88. Gigi

    Get out quick...who really wants us pined down in Iraq? And for what reason. That is a question that bothers me.


    July 10, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  89. Treena, Pensacola,FL


    What we should do is nothing, the gov't of Iraq wants to (and should) take control of it's own problems. We as a country would not want another country to come in and try to settle any of our domestic issues. We should never have been there and we need to get out.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  90. ramish

    We are out of money jack! there is nothing USA can do right now. how come South Arabia is not helping them? They call them self muslims than they should be helping their friend islamic country..

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  91. Michael, Alexandria, VA

    The myth of Iraq needs to end. If they wish to partition themselves, I say – let them.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  92. Jay in Texas

    The U.S. no longer controls what the Iraqi government does. That government wants us out so we should continue to work toward achieving a full withdrawal and let the Iraqi people deal with their own problems. Once we are completely gone, things will settle down.
    Brownwood, Texas

    July 10, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  93. James In Idaho

    Jack, I don't know what they should do, but I know what they will do... have a blamestorming session...

    July 10, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  94. Chris, Bx. NY

    America will still continue to aide them for a time, in air strikes, and if things get terrible, Iraq can still request U.S. assistance on the ground. However, a deal is a deal, & it is time for the Iraqi military to handle these matters......They want America out, and want full control of their land, that's what they are moving, rapidly towards.
    If it takes a mini civil war to get Iraq to where it needs to be, where the Iraqi people want it to be, then so be it.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  95. Jack

    Leave which is what should have happened years ago.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  96. George

    Ask George Bush to clean up the mess he made even if it takes doing something he has NEVER DONE before, and that is donning a uniform, picking up a rifle, and doing the duty that every other red blooded American is expected to do. Send Cheney, he'll talk , and smirk them to death

    July 10, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  97. Ruby Coria LA., CA.

    Jack, is it safe to say "it's not our problem?" in reality it is not, they couldn't wait to take over, they threw a party, they where being occupied, now they are free to do & undo.. I know we made a mess & left a mess, oh well, see ya.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  98. James In Idaho

    Jack, the US should take a step back and continue to let the chips fall as they may, concentrate on getting Bin Laden and putting him on trial, and then go in, if we have the troop strength and public will left, to fix what we broke.

    Our troops have already done far more than they should have, postitively and negatively, and we can't ask them to do more. Keep people there for diplomatic reasons, but nothing more.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  99. Lance Denney in Ca

    Iraq HAS to take matters in their OWN hands. Show their people what REAL Chaos is. Why THEY need to be in charge, and why the PEOPLE need to support ONE government, and NOT religious law or outside influence.

    Once people realize it's their RELIGIONS killing other Muslims and innocents, they will revolt, as have the Iranians.

    As did the colonists coming to America.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  100. Susan Frost

    We should get out and stay out and let them try to piece together what's left of their lives, families and their poor little country. We've done enough harm already. How many Iraqis fought in our Civil War?

    Tuscaloosa AL

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  101. Tim Mulcahy


    Who really knows what to do in Iraq? It seems we have two courses of action. Ramp it all up and send in more and more troops leading to many more dead Americans, perhaps as many as 56,000. Or, we simply "declare victory," put up a sign claiming "mission accomplished" and pull up stakes.

    Medina, Ohio

    July 10, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  102. Katiec Pekin, IL

    What can we do? The agreement gave leadership of the country back to the Iraq government. It further supports we cannot and should not tell other countries how live. Would not be surprised if within a few months they are back to constant fighting between their country. We have been told from the beginning how happy the Iraq people are with their freedom etc, but think that is as unsubstantiated as our reasons for going to war.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  103. Jane (Minnesota)

    I'd say move up the timetable for withdrawal & leave it to the Iraqi government to solve; they didn't want us to stay when they were warned . We shouldn't be spending our tax dollars on a war that should have never been started by the Bushies. We put the moeny to better use fixing our country.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  104. Kim - Blair, NE

    I believe we should stick to the agreement. We shouldn't have been there in the first place. That would be unless we find those WMD's.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  105. Roy - Brooklyn, NY

    The U.S. can no longer keep our troops in harm's way for the security of Iraq. It doesn't matter when U.S. troops pullout, there is going to be violence. Iraq is better served by giving the Iraqi police and military more time to learn how to deal with the security situation. America is better served by bringing our troops home, and getting these resourceful people to work rebuilding our economy.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  106. Diane Dagenais Turbide


    The U.S. need to have a diplomatic dialogue with the Irak government about this quick violent reality in order to allow some adjustments and not let the situation get worse for the iraki people!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  107. Tim Mulcahy


    Does anybody really know what to do in Iraq? Either we need to commit more resouces to the effort at great cost to our country in both casulties and dollars in a slim hope that Iraq will end up as we want it to be (a free democratic country). Or, we find a graceful way of getting out as soon as possible.

    Medina, Ohio

    July 10, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  108. Michelle

    Hard to say, Jack. Will there ever really be an end to the violence? It's almost an impossible situation. If we stay, our presence incites violence. When we withdraw, there is more opportunity to cause violence. I am just crossing my fingers hoping someone smarter than I has a solution.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  109. Jerry

    Nothing, except start packing and coming home. Write it off as the biggest Blunder in American history, That is all they know is violence, they have been killing each other for thousands of years, you can't change that in 8 years. Jerry /Iowa

    July 10, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  110. Tom Pittsburgh

    The withdrawal should continue. The Iraqi's must settle this civil war themselves. We opened pandora's box and we don't know what goes back in it.
    The only thing we can do now is wait untill the civil war ends, probably with anothe dictator, then try to persuade toward democracy.
    Oh ! we then should name Cheney ambassador and send him there without the usual marine gaurd.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  111. John from Alaska

    Exactly what we should have done in 2003, absolutely nothing. Iraq is a sovereign country and should make it's own decisions and solve it's own problems. We should pay attention to our problems such as health care for all and the economy and quit trying to police the world. When our house is in order than we can try to solve the world's problems.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  112. Mike, New Orleans

    Let Iran police Iran.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  113. kishen c.rao

    jack, how are you? I think we need to stay mum and get out of Iraq, let the people up there deal with it...we should not spend a dime on this war and any wars...fix our own problems, like Health care, fuel efficiency and economy and Immigration....we have enough problems...deal with ...not a darn thing with Iraq or Iran, or n. korea, let europe deal...and rest of the world...

    July 10, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
  114. Greg Mechanicsburg, PA

    Let me ask what the U.S. should do if violence continues to escalate in Somalia, or Yemen, or Saudi Arabia. These are all sovereign nations and have the rights and responsibilities that any sovereign nation would. Iraq is not different. Iraq is a government that is responsible to its people. We have been asked to leave and should do so as quickly and as safely as possible.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  115. Ken in NC

    They negotiated the agreement they wanted so it is time they lay in that bed. They are comfortable killing each other so let them have at it.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  116. Kevin in CA

    Do what I suggested 4 years ago ... Declare victory, withdraw our troops and start selling arms to the Sunnis. After all, the Shiites and Sunnis have been at war for about 1,377 years.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  117. DawnL,CA

    It's way past time for the Iraqi people to stand up. If they are not ready-so be it. Bring our troops home NOW. It appears Iraq will have its own civil war whenever we leave. Might as well be sooner than later.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:57 pm |
  118. Mary - Boerne, TX

    The Iraqi people want us out.. What else can we do, are we supposed to babysit them forever? Yes, Sadam was killing them, we got rid of Sadam and now they are killing each other. What exactly have we accomplished there? All those precious lives lost for what?

    July 10, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  119. Dave Geiger in Alabama

    Stay on plan, please. We have been in Iraq too long and we shouldn't have been there at all. It's time for the people of Iraq to decide how they are going to run their own country and deal with their own radicals. We've done more than enough to give them the opportunity, now it's their time to sacrifice.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:00 pm |
  120. Dee in sunny Florida

    We should still GET OUT!

    We cannot even control the violence in our own country, but at least it's OUR country.

    The Iraqi people have to, at some point, live the way THEY want to live. And they have to sort out the problems. It is NOT our job.

    If we stay longer that only masks the problem. The people in that part of the world have been violent, fighting and killing each other, for CENTURIES. Get out, let them run their own country. Sooner or later some strong leader will emerge. It is not our business who that leader is. Part of the problem causing the present violence is that WE have tried to impose our way of life on the Iraqi people!

    We need to get out, and let them deal with it.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  121. David in San Diego

    Tell the Iraqui government "(Our) mission accomplished. Best of luck to y'all."

    July 10, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  122. seeksense

    We have to allow the Iraqi's to work out their own problems.
    We've been there long enough.
    Palm Bay, FL

    July 10, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  123. Andrea Brinkley in Raleigh, NC


    To my knowledge, Al Qaida has claimed it will fight until our troops have left the country. If we leave, as President Obama has claimed we will, perhaps the people of Iraq, along with the insurgents, will celebrate! However, if the violence continues after we have exited completely, there's no need for our presence to return. In that sort of situation, it's obvious our enemy has other goals. Also, as long as someone is profiting from making bullets and bombs, there will always be a reason for war.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  124. Annie, Atlanta

    Get our troops out of harm’s way – bring them home. Enough, already!

    July 10, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  125. John, Fort Collins,CO

    I dosen't matter if violence in Iraq escalates or subsides, the U.S. should stay on schedule with troop withdrawal to force the Iraqi government and people to assume responsibility for policing their own country. They are not going to step up to the plate as long as we continue to do their job for them. Their future, good or bad, is now in their hands; as it should be.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  126. Karl from SF, CA

    Ship Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld in, they can handle it. Besides Bush and Cheney can finally complete their military obligations that they skirted 40 years ago.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  127. dave

    Send George Bush and Dick Chenney they started it. Other than that nothing, we can afford the 500Gs a minute anymore to run the war.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  128. Jim

    Jack, it's been obvious for years now that sectarian violence was NOT related to Al Quadi in any way. It's gone on in Iraq for hundreds of years. However, I do believe that Al Quadi took advantage of the situation and took sides in order to expolit the Iraqi's resentment of U.S. troops occupying their country after the war. As for what we should do, I don't think anyone on the street is well enough versed on the various issues related to our security to know. It's my feeling however, that we should continue to adhere to our withdrawal timetable and continue to train Iraqi troops. We can't continue to let this war drain our economy and military with so many other severe threats to our survival existing today around the world. By the way, I wonder what justification Al Quadi could have for killing Iraqi's when we are gone. If they do, then the Iraqi's should begin to kill Al Quadi. Just my opinion.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  129. Arran Anderson

    It doesn't matter if we leave or stay. Iraq will have its internal revolution either way. In my opinion, we just go ahead and pull out and let the chips fall where they may. The same goes for the war in Afghanistan.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  130. Elliot

    We shouldn't even have gone in there in the first place. But we did and now president Obama is pulling them out to quickly. The reason there is more blood being shed is because the troops are coming out to quickly. I say slow down the rate the troops are coming out then the deaths will decrease

    July 10, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  131. Ed'sKate

    Nothing. We don't even belong there. The Iraq people don't want us there. . We should bring our service personnel home immediately after brokering a deal with the Iraqi government. The deal would be that once our military men/women arrived home safely, the Iraqis would declare an Emergency ask for our help. BUT instead of sending our military back, we immediately DRAFT Bush,Cheney, Rumsfeld, and the rest of their cronies and send them over to clean up the mess they got us all into for no damn good reason other than to get their hands on the Iraqi oil fields. I wonder how they would make out!!!!!!

    July 10, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  132. Daniel in New York, NY

    We did what we have to. We should get out and go into Iran, Darfur and the Gaza.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  133. PeteyWheatstraw

    Obama has to make the final decision on why we are there. If the reason is to control oil, then we will be there until North Korea bombs the entire globe. If not, then we have to back out of a Holy War that has been there for 5000+ years. Who are we to change the way the Iraqis live their life in their country. Let's check ourself before we wreck ourself. I think the major issue is that we need to keep our soldiers busy doing some type of work. If they all return to the U.S. would half a million jobs suddenly appear? Think about it.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  134. Jim


    We're standing down, so the Iraqis better stand up. They've been wanting us to leave and they've had plenty of time to prepare to defend themselves. We've invested enough blood and treasure over there.

    Reno, Nevada

    July 10, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  135. Carol Auburndale, Fl

    Leave them alone and pull our troops out. That is what they wanted. Sooner or later they will work out their differences or kill eachother off. End of our problem

    July 10, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  136. Steven Bradley

    I think we should ask Dick Cheney. He's been right about everything so far.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  137. SHARON: Anchorage, Alaska

    Step back and let what our forces have taught them be put to use. It is the violence itself that will build the momentum to stop it. Just as in any of our violent U.S. cities. Once levels of different types of crime reached high enough levels, the tactics the police departments used adapted to confront and decrease the levels of violence.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  138. SHARON: Anchorage, Alaska

    Step back and let what our forces have taught them be put to use. It is the violence itself that will build the momentum to stop it. Just as in any of our violent U.S. cities. Once levels of different types of crime reached high enough levels, the tactics that "successful police departments" implemented, adapted, confronted and decreased the levels of violence. Let them learn how to succeed or fail on their own.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  139. mack from michigan

    We should do what should have been done 61/2 years ago! Make an assessment to determine how a religious civil war in that region of the world impacts the well being of this country and gauge our response accordingly. If it affects our security in some way move in and stop it. If it doesn't then let all them fools blow each other to paradise and help clean up the mess when they're done!

    July 10, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  140. Jim Lafayette, La

    Get out and stay out. We're there because the previous administration lied to us about Saddam Hussien and his part in 9/11. Let the Iraqui people settle this mess the U.S created.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:58 pm |
  141. andyzag Lynn, MA

    Bush and Cheney elected to invade for no reason at all. Would it be possible to have them stationed in Iraq?

    July 10, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  142. Brendan in Phoenix

    Jack, the answer is nothing. At this point, I don't think there's anything else the U.S. military can do to control violence short of staying there permanently. The Iraqi people have made it very clear that they wish to have full sovereignty, so that means they must have full responsibility as well. I think things will settle down after the Iraqi security forces get used to acting on their own but for now, the ball is in their court.

    July 10, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  143. Julia Smith

    Julia, Houston, TX

    Got oil? Got greed? Got no bid contracts and blind trusts? Sorry, botttom line it's a cash cow!

    July 10, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  144. j/NJ

    What should the U.S. do if violence continues to escalate in Iraq?

    Violence has been up and down in Iraq since the Amer occupation, it is way of life and likely to continue in much the same way irrespective of American policy...fact is there is nothing more the US military can do in that country, the Iraqi people have a right to be free of occupation, thus the quicker American forces draw down the better the chances the Iraqi's themselves will determine their destiny...

    July 10, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  145. Eric Bracke

    Wish them the best of luck and kiss them goodbye.

    July 10, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  146. NANCY M.- Colorado

    It's a test. We should not deviate from the present plan. If we do, they will have trumped us in spades. The Iraq people need to adjust to the situation. Unfortunately, the bad guys don't care who they kill.

    July 10, 2009 at 6:25 pm |