August 16th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

Iraq's army: not ready until 2020; should U.S. forces leave next year?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Iraq's top army general says his troops won't be fully trained and able to take control of security until 2020.... another 10 years from now.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/08/16/art.us.troops.jpg caption=""]
The warning comes as the U.S. says it's on target to end its combat mission and pull thousands of troops out of Iraq by the end of this month.

The White House says it's pulled out 80,000 troops from Iraq since President Obama took office... and that thousands more will leave at the end of August.

The U.S. plans to keep about 50,000 troops in Iraq - for support and training - but they, too, will leave by the end of next year.

But Iraq's military brass don't think this is such a great plan. And Iraq's top army general may have a point. Iraq's political leaders still haven't been able to form a new government 5 months after holding elections.

U.S. National Security Adviser Jim Jones said despite this assessment by Iraq's army, there will be no significant U.S. troop presence after next year... and that, "the mission is on the way to being accomplished" in Iraq.

The U.S. better hope so... now that it's focusing a lot of money and military resources on the war in Afghanistan, where insurgent attacks are at record levels.

It doesn't look like Afghanistan will be in any shape to see U.S. troops leave as soon as next summer, which is what President Obama wants.

Here’s my question to you: Iraq's army says it won't be ready to take control until 2020. Should U.S. forces still leave next year?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Don in Ontario writes:
Iraq will turn into a volatile mess whenever America pulls out, be it 2010 or 2020. Ditto with Afghanistan. The American military advisers to the successive U.S. presidents either have no understanding of foreign cultures, or they and the C.I.A. provoke wars to keep the armaments and security industries busy. These two particular wars have cost an unprecedented amount of money. It appears that the terrorists have bankrupted America.

Don writes:
Yes, they should leave as soon as possible. If the Iraqi army can't defend the country by now, they won't be able to in 2020 or even 2050. Why is it that these guys can easily fight U.S. troops without equipment, body armor or sophisticated air support, but can't do anything when it comes to fighting their own home grown insurgency? It's not a case of needing more time to train and prepare, it's a case of lacking the motivation to take care of themselves.

Darryl writes:
Yes. If you keep feeding a dog, it won't learn to hunt. It's time we get out of a place we had no reason to be in the first place.

Tim in Texas writes:
Let's see, we've been there for seven years fighting a war that we had no business getting into in the first place, combat troops do no good whatsoever in setting up a government, we've probably lost in Afghanistan where we needed to win because we went into Iraq, and the whole thing cost us gobs of money. Let's stay another ten years just for the heck of it. I also like to chew on ground-up glass.

JoAnn in Iowa writes:
You know, if the Iraqis say they'll be ready to take control of the war in 2020, when it gets to be 2019 they'll ask for a few more years and then a few more years. No. We've been there long enough. Leave on our schedule. They had enough time to plan for this. We have spent enough and shed enough blood.

Gary in Arizona writes:
Should U.S. forces leave Iraq next year? ABSOLUTELY NOT. They should leave Friday.

Filed under: Iraq • Troop Withdrawals • U.S. Army
soundoff (116 Responses)
  1. John from Alabama

    Jack: Yes, we need to leave Iraq, because the United States Military should have never been in Iraq. Iraq was a war spun on bad intelligence compounded by bad leadership in the Pentagon and White House. Iraq wants the United States to stay, so the contractors can spend more dollars in Iraq. We are done, or didn't you see President Bush under the "Mission Accomplished" sign.

    August 16, 2010 at 1:13 pm |
  2. Rob in Brooklyn

    Its now or never. They just want to see how much more money they can steal. Billions are missing there. If they can't do it , so be it.

    August 16, 2010 at 1:15 pm |
  3. Al Bledsoe

    Will Iraq's Army ever take control? Control of what?

    August 16, 2010 at 1:15 pm |
  4. Conor in Chicago

    Yes. If we stay until 2020 the Iraqis will say they won't be ready until 2025.

    August 16, 2010 at 1:22 pm |
  5. Russ in PA

    They should leave Iraq now, Afghanistan the next day, and Germany/Korea by Friday. And the rest of the world by next Monday...

    August 16, 2010 at 1:26 pm |
  6. Kevin in Dallas

    2020? I'm starting to think our military is too good at neutralizing an opposing army.

    August 16, 2010 at 1:27 pm |
  7. RB in CA

    This is a tough one, Jack. On one hand, 2020 sure seems like a long ways away and it’s hard to believe the Iraqi’s will need that much time to take back control of their own country. Me thinks Iraq’s military may be stonewalling and forcing the U.S. to foot the bill for their Marshall Law.

    Conversely, the U.S. and its extorted allies were the ones who went in with guns a’blazin’ after 9/11 and wrongfully bombed that country back to the Stone Age. An argument could be made that the U.S. possesses a moral obligation to help rebuild Iraq and patiently wait until internal stability is truly obtained.

    Chino Hills, CA

    August 16, 2010 at 1:28 pm |
  8. Paul Round Rock Texas

    Yes,Yes, and Yes Jack! The statement from Iraq's army should of been that will they ever be ready to take control not by 2020. They just want us there so the Iraq army have us to blame if unpleasent tasks need to be done and then they can say thier hands were forced by the evil U.S. Army. They also only want us to pay for everything. Get out next year if not sooner.

    August 16, 2010 at 1:31 pm |
  9. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    In Vietnam there was Vietnamization, this is Iraqization. The Iraqis want someone else to do it. They want 10 more years? I see a lot of people just walking around doing nothing, here's a job for them. In WW2 the Americans should have told Britain we need 10 years. It's long past the time Iraq will sink or swim on their own. Welfare is over!

    August 16, 2010 at 1:43 pm |
  10. jimmy in nc

    We absolutely need to leave! And what if the Iraqi army is not ready in 2020? I'm starting my diet next Monday. Whatever is going to happen when we leave is going to happen when we leave.......either now or in 10 years. Let's take the pill now!

    August 16, 2010 at 1:49 pm |
  11. Charles, Lansing, Michigan

    We had no business invading Iraq so the sooner we get out the better. There will be civil strife there whether or not the U.S. is present. Cut our losses at an even trillion, declare the war won. and run as fast as we can.

    August 16, 2010 at 1:50 pm |
  12. JENNA

    Iraq's army says it won't be ready to take control until 2020. Should U.S. combat forces still leave next year?

    If we can build a battle ready solier in 12 weeks so can the Iraqi army.

    Time to cut the cord and let them sink or swim.

    It is no longer our battle!

    GW is gone!

    Roseville CA

    August 16, 2010 at 1:54 pm |
  13. gordon

    Every baby needs to be weaned. It's time to let Iraq come to grips with their fledgling country.

    Las Cruces, NM

    August 16, 2010 at 1:54 pm |
  14. Bill

    Gee you think? Absolutely yes. Get our kids out of there, and have them fight for their own freedom. Our people are there, and they are coming here? Rediculous to risk one more drop of American blood.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:03 pm |
  15. Ed from Port Aransas, TX

    Or else what, stay until 2020? And be warned! The same neocons that got us into this mess are now running a propaganda campaign to get us to go to war with Iran.

    Ed Reed
    Port Aransas, TX

    August 16, 2010 at 2:07 pm |

    tampa, fl leaving yesterday isn't too soon.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:09 pm |
  17. Rick McDaniel

    Iraq will NEVER be "ready". Let's pull out, and let them sink or swim, on their own. As long as we are there to hold their hands, they will never stand on their own 2 feet.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:09 pm |
  18. Ray

    Sooner the better. Not one more US soldier should die for GW getting revenge for his father.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:10 pm |
  19. Floyd Burgess

    It took less than one year to make me a combat ready soldier during the Vietnam War. What's wrong with those weenies in Iraq? Bring our soldiers home.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:13 pm |
  20. bob z fr ,pa.

    yes they should have been out yesturday

    August 16, 2010 at 2:14 pm |
  21. Joanne

    2011, 2012, 2010 – when America leaves Iraq in short order will be back to a dicatatorship. Ameirca is naive and a sucker and has been for many yrs. Unless of course there are money benefit for some – one must always follow the money in any sticky situation as that is what tells the real story.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:18 pm |
  22. Chris in Marietta, GA

    Time to leave, if we keep holding their hands they will never be ready. It is just like learning to ski, your taught the basics and sent down the mountain. Sure your gonna fall down a few times, and sometimes it will really hurts, but you pick yourself up, try again, and eventually you learn how. Even the best still fall down from time to time.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:19 pm |
  23. diridi

    We should get out of Iraq as fast as possible. I do not give darn hoot what they say. No more wars...ok, enough GOP thugs looted our economy on the pretext of wars....Did we get oil from Iraq...no, what and why....stay there and spend my dime????

    August 16, 2010 at 2:25 pm |
  24. Mario

    Absolutely not! They should leave this year!!!

    August 16, 2010 at 2:31 pm |
  25. Bizz Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    Leave! We shouldn't have been there in the first place. If people need a better reason to leave next year, look at our economy and how much lives and money this unnecessary war cost us.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:36 pm |
  26. Jane (Minnesota)

    Yes we should, Jack, but the reality of it is the US never REALLY leaves many battles completely. We have troop stationed all over the worlld.

    August 16, 2010 at 2:46 pm |
  27. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    The hodge podge that the English threw together and called Iraq, has three distinct groups, Sunni, Shia and kurds. Three Muslim middle Eastern peoples can't get along for centuries, so you throw in a fourth usually non-Muslim, western people?

    August 16, 2010 at 2:59 pm |
  28. Fred R DeLeon Sr

    President Obama doesn't know anything about Foreign Politics. Nor
    Hillary R. Clinton. They promise whatever is needed as long they get
    their way. What's going in the Middle East is a religious war that could
    bring us into a nuclear issue.

    Indianapolis, IN

    August 16, 2010 at 2:59 pm |
  29. Carl


    To hell with 2020, or next year, how about right now. Lets save some lives and a ton of money while were at it, sounds like a great idea to me, some how, I don't think our inept government will do the right thing, do you Jack?

    August 16, 2010 at 3:04 pm |
  30. Allen in Hartwell GA

    US forces should have left Iraq alone, period. Lacking that, they should have departed shortly after capturing Saddam. As long as US forces are there the conflict will not get better. The only way for it to get better is to burn itself out – in other words let the majority Shia defeat the minority Sunni and form a government from the ashes.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:05 pm |
  31. Craig in Houston

    Damn right. What does being "ready" actually mean anyway? We've been there 7 years (admittedly, 6 years were under an incompetent and misguided administration) and they can't even get their government's act together, much less a military capable of doing what we've been doing....which is simply keeping the lid on violence to a degree. From the beginning, it was a lost cause, as anyone but the neo-cons would readily admit. There's no point in throwing more lives and treasure into that morass of tribal and religious animosity.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:06 pm |
  32. southerncousin

    Oh you have not heard? It is Bush's fault. The liberal mantra. Bush's fault and the republicans are going to take away your social security, because they are in cahoots with the rich. All examples of liberal babble. But the upcoming disaster in Iraq will be blamed in spite of all contrary evidence on Bush. Liberals and particlarly this inept tool of the unions we have as a president, do not accept blame or resposibility for anything.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:08 pm |
  33. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    Hell Yes! They have been playing this game for almost a decade now because they know we will not leave until they are ready. If I knew I would take a beating as soon as I stepped out of the locker room, you better believe that I’d stay in there as long as possible. Why should they stand up as long as we are willing to take their lumps for them. They are malingering and have been ever since, so we need to tell them we are history next year. Only then will they will be forced to do their own heavy lifting, but Uncle Sap continues to get suckered.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:10 pm |
  34. ken, atlantic city, nj

    Yes all the u.s. forces should leave next year. I don't care if iraq forces are ready or not. They have had 10 years to get trained, now they need another 10 years. We have spent a trillion dollars, wounded and killed thousands of our troops, and killed 500 thousand iraqis because we thought iraq might have wmd's. It is time for the president to protect our borders not all the other countries in the world. Drugs, guns, illegals, and human trafficking go on every day accross the U.S. borders and noboby seems to care. Stop the stupidity and bring the troops home to protect our borders.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:10 pm |
  35. Hugo Kijne, Hoboken NJ

    The longer the US stays, the longer it will take Iraq's army to take control. US combat forces should leave earlier rather than later.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:11 pm |
  36. Don (Ottawa)

    Yes, they should leave as soon as possible. If the Iraqi army can't defend the country by now, they won't be able to in 2020 or even 2050. Why is it that these guys can easily fight US troops without equipment, body armor or sophisocated air support, but can't do anything when it comes to fighting their own home grown insurgency? It's not a case of needing more time to train and prepare, it's a case of lacking the motivation to take care of themselves.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:12 pm |
  37. Gary H. Boyd

    Should US forces leave Iraq next year. ABSOLUTELY NOT. They should leave Friday.

    Gary in Arizona

    August 16, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
  38. Laura

    They will never feel the urgency to be ready until we leave and their government kicks them in the butt !

    August 16, 2010 at 3:16 pm |
  39. Susan Frost

    Absolutely, if not sooner. We should never have sent our money and our children over there to make defense contractors richer in the first damn place!

    Tuscaloosa, AL

    August 16, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  40. LS

    Yes, U.S. combat forces should leave next year.
    I spent 8 weeks in Marine Corps boot camp followed by 4 weeks in an infantry training battalion.
    Sixty days later I found my young butt in Vietnam after spending an additional 4 weeks in a staging battalion.
    If the Iraqi army is not ready to take control by NOW, it never will be.
    2020? Give me a break! Someone is blowing serious smoke!

    August 16, 2010 at 3:24 pm |
  41. alumette

    yes, yes, yesterday. They will never be ready. Who decides the degree of readiness? We never should have been there at the first place. The longer we stay, the more we delay a state of confusion and dependency.

    Memphis TN.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:25 pm |
  42. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    No, they should leave tomorrow and tell Iraq to call Bush and Cheney to come over and help train their troops. When are we going to stop playing God and especially since we can't even take care of our own problems on the border or Chicago, etc.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  43. Mack from Michigan

    The United States may well be responsible for the dangerous and volatile security situation that exists in Iraq today but the upcoming deadline was established three years ago and all the partys new about it. If the Government of Iraq has failed to prepare properly and they expect us to stay there and provide them their security then they should foot the damn bill and provide compensation to the familys whose loved one's are lost protecting their interest and covering their incompetance!

    August 16, 2010 at 3:31 pm |
  44. calvin

    yes. after we beat there army we should leave. do not rebuild them and also tell them if they go back to there old ways we make return.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:41 pm |
  45. Don Desaulniers (Belleville, Ontario)

    Iraq will turn into a volatile mess whenever America pulls out, be it 2010 or 2020. Ditto with Afghanistan.
    The American military advisors to the successive U.S. Presidents either have no understanding of foreign cultures, or they and the C.I.A. provoke wars to keep the armaments and security industries busy.
    These two particular wars have been unprecedentedly expensive. It appears that the terrorists have bankrupted America.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:42 pm |
  46. Steve, Clifton, VA

    While we have an obligation to make every attempt to restore as best we can the infrastructure that we destroyed in this inappropriate invasion of this country, we can only apologize but so much. There is a price we and the rest of the world will have to pay for decades to come for our invasion. We cannot be there on their timeline. We decided the time to go in and therefore should decide when to get out. We must remember that they have asked us out of the their country on more than one occasion during the past year. They must learn to govern themselves!!
    The health of our country's financial/deficit health certainly take priority over their comfort level with governing their own security.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:53 pm |
  47. Eric Platt

    No they shouldn't leave next year.

    They should leave now.

    August 16, 2010 at 3:53 pm |
  48. marja hartzell-oforji

    No, no and no. It`s not any business of the Americans or of the any other countries, how the Iraqi people are going to manage with their problems
    after the foreign groups are gone. It`s up to the Iraqi people to solve them and to build up their country the way they want to have it, democratic or not.
    From Stockholm, Sweden

    August 16, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  49. Patsy, Texas

    Jack, YES we should leave. After nine years of this unnecessary war-
    if this oil-rich country cannot get its act together by now, they most
    likely never will. This stupid war has caused far too many American
    and innocent lives, and far too much UNFUNDED money to keep it
    going. I don't know what it will take for these people to work together,
    but then you look at our own Congress, and maybe we can
    understand it better. Iraq should be a thriving Country by now, and
    since they are not, they need to earn their freedoms, just like our
    ancestors did. They owe us big time now, but we do not owe them
    10 more years!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
  50. Victor G. Hughes

    Hell Jack, we are both old enough to remember Vietnam !!!
    Yeah, the South was ready and your country left a pile of armament as well as weapons. The South collapsed in months!!!
    With the lack of good governance, the corruption and the tribal layout creating instability, the recipe will produce the same results. It's as if the 'rank' officers coming out of your academies are told not to read the history of the Vietnam war.
    Your nation doesn't seem upset about the US casualties, as it is a volunteer force, but only about the cost.
    The silence from the university and high school campus students is revolting as they no longer have to think of a draft !!!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:02 pm |
  51. Mark from Voorhees, NJ

    Since we never should have been there at all, and it was a complete waste of American lives and assets, tomorrow would not be too soon to be out of there.

    And I hope we have learned never to send 150,000 men to do the job that 100 could do with no publicity... and that goes for Afghanistan as well, unless the point was to make money for the companies of the friends of those in power, the lives of our sons and daughters not withstanding.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:03 pm |
  52. Jack Pine

    No Jack,
    First, we should not have been there in the first place.
    second, since we were there we should have left after Bush declared victory.
    Last but not least we should leave now and let them proceed on their own with their ongoing civil war.

    Jack from Tennessee

    August 16, 2010 at 4:03 pm |
  53. Bill (Tacoma) WA.

    YES, Absolute; YES.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:08 pm |
  54. Jack Pine

    No Jack,
    First, we should not have been there in the first place.
    second, since we were there we should have left after Bush declared victory.
    Last but not least we should leave now and let them proceed on their own with their ongoing civil war.


    from Dunlap, Tennessee

    August 16, 2010 at 4:08 pm |
  55. Joe R - Houston

    If our goal is to establish another country controlled by its military, how can we abandon it to its constitutionally elected political leaders?

    August 16, 2010 at 4:09 pm |
  56. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Yes and get the hell out of Afghan also and while they're at it bring our troops home that are in German, Japan and any other foreigh country, we don't need to be spending money there protecting those countries while our economy goes to pot.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:09 pm |
  57. A Southern Lady - North Carolina

    No, they should not leave next year -- they should leave now!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:11 pm |
  58. Tom Trapani, Quito, EC

    Jack, the short answer is, yes. It's time now for the Iraq's to grow up by standing on their own two feet and determining their own destiny.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:15 pm |
  59. Kathie

    We should have never gone into Iraq in the first place but Bush just had to start another war. Our troops should ALL come home now!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:19 pm |
  60. Paul in Florida

    With centuries of recorded brutality, betrayal, and tribalism; remaining anywhere in the Middle East is folly. Put the investment in boots on the ground into a military response so terrible that any further attacks on America will be met with a counter attack so terrible that to attack us again would be their complete and total annihilation. No forgiveness.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  61. Ken in Pinon Hills, California

    Get out!
    That is 10 more years of refereeing their civil war. We have our civil war to worry about, here at home, or hasn't anyone noticed.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:29 pm |
  62. Greg Who?

    Yes, U.S. forces should leave Iraq as soon as possible. They should be removed from every foreign nation. We do not allow any foreign troops to be stationed here other than at embassies, and that is foreign soil within U.S. boundaries. We can no longer afford to be the world's police force for political as well as financial reasons. That job should be left solely to the U.N.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:34 pm |
  63. dennis from Minneapolis, MN

    At some point we need to wake up and make this about the money. We are going to ruin the country. I dont understand how no one sees it?!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:34 pm |
  64. Joe in VA

    Get the hell out and close the door on this sorry and inordinately costly episode.

    Chatham, VA

    August 16, 2010 at 4:35 pm |
  65. Jurgen R. Brul

    Hello CNN friends,

    No, U.S. forces should Not leave next year,
    But U.S. forces should work for 3 months abroad(Iraq) and
    get released by other shift teams for 3 months,
    so that the soldiers can spend More Time with their Families and
    Improve their Homeland Security!

    Jurgen R. Brul

    August 16, 2010 at 4:39 pm |
  66. charmaine evans

    Our gov. Needs to be honets about "why" we are in the middle east–O I L! And the fact that it is "running out". USA wants a permenant base to protect the oil that's left from china or russia. Has nothing to do with nation building or democracy

    August 16, 2010 at 4:40 pm |
  67. L

    well, it's best for us that the troops come back. I mean iraq is an independent country now with their own firearms, so they're able to handle any left over problems. besides, the whole thing is just starting to give the US a bad reputation around the world, like we're "oil stealers." I say let's just end the problem. they're not really going to do anything in iraq. bin laden is not gona appear out of the blue there.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:43 pm |
  68. Meg from Troy

    And in 2020 they still won't be ready to take on their own responsibility for their country. We're on the way out of a bad situation–where we've done as much good as we can under awful circumstances. Let's keep on trucking–bring the troops home on our schedule.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:44 pm |
  69. David in Tampa

    Of course we should leave next year Jack. This country can no longer afford the costs of two wars. We will still have some troops there but we need to disengage Iraq now because of a worsening situation in Afghanistan which will require those assets. No good will come of us staying there accept more crooks lining their pockets with US dollars.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:50 pm |
  70. Dennis north Carolina

    we will not remove all troops or bases just like we never left Europe, we still have troops in japan, korea and other countries and islands and there has been peace for years so why?

    August 16, 2010 at 4:51 pm |
  71. John from San Antonio

    Why shouldn't we leave? Iraq had no army in the first place. we destroyed it with little or no effort, so why should we build a better army than they had, one which we may once again have to destroy.

    August 16, 2010 at 4:52 pm |
  72. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    Yes. Bush and top military officials knew what this can of worms was going to be like the minute they attacked Iraq. It will be the same old story 50 years from now. Tell the Iraqi General to take charge and GET READY because here it comes!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  73. JIM El Paso Tx

    ABSOLUTELY we should leave Jack! Them clowns just want us to keep them safe for another 10 years and have us foot the bills for that hell hole. Bring our troops home NOW!

    August 16, 2010 at 4:55 pm |
  74. Doris Lauter

    They have had 8 years to train for the war. My brother had Marine boot camp for 3 months and they sent him off to Iwo Jima. If the Iraq soldiers can't cut it in 8 years, too bad. Let them fend for themselves. I am tired of spending all the money on them and getting our Americans killed.
    D. Lauter
    Ojai, Calfornia

    August 16, 2010 at 4:58 pm |
  75. Chuck - NW Arkansas

    Our troops have already been involved in Dick Cheney’s illegal occupation for 7 years.
    During these times of economic depression, enough cash has been wasted to “Bring Democracy” to Iraq, so how can we justify throwing more money down this bottomless pit?

    August 16, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  76. Ed from California

    I hate wars! I hate mismanaged wars more! Pres. Bush II dropped the ball in Afghanistan and dropped the ball again in Iraq that had nothing to do with 9/11. But, now we pissed them completely off. If the Muslims occupied this country what would we do about it?. I know every man, woman and child would kill everyone of them until they were all dead. That's war. People are killed or maimed in war. War is heck!
    We have to finish off what we started. We can't fight a politically correct war, they don't. We have to insert as many troops necessary at both fronts to finish off the enemy completely. If we don't, they'll be coming for us. We woke up a junkyard dog, and now we have to lay it down. There is no "political correctness" in war. We have to finish it off, and not by attacking Iran, either.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  77. Chandler in Rockaway, NJ


    An army is an exact reflection of the society and government that creates it. If the government is weak, divided, and corrupt, no amount of training will make the army strong, loyal, and honest. We could stay until 2020 or 2050 and it won't make a bit of difference if the government of Iraq stays as it is. The whole strategy is a delusion and a smokescreen.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:02 pm |
  78. JoAnn in Iowa

    You know, if the Iraqi's say they'll be ready to take control of the war in 2020, when it gets to be 2019 they'll ask for a few more years and then a few more years. No. We've been there long enough. Leave on our schedule. They had enough time to plan for this. We have spent enough and shed enough blood.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  79. Dick B

    Yes our troops should leave but I think anyone who wants them to stay should have permission to take their place.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  80. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, the departure scheduled for next year is going to be cancelled. Once U.S. causalties shrink to zero, as they have done recently, the presence of the U.S. forces in a non-combat support role becomes a non-event. Obama, hopefully, will understand that the training is not complete, and the "mission" for Iraq is NOT done, and will VERY quietly extend the U.S. presence there, indefinitely. If he doesn't, the country will slowly revert to separate factions, and fail. Strategically, we need a strong, stable Iraq, and it ain't there, yet!

    August 16, 2010 at 5:05 pm |
  81. Ray in Nashville

    Jack, we need to pull out of Iraq according to President Obama's time table. If the Iraqi's need help beyond that, let them go to George Bush and Dick Cheney for money, and let them contract with their henchmen and XE to prop up the current Iraqi government.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:08 pm |
  82. ron c. Phx Az.

    Jack, You probably won't get many replys saying we should stay until 2020. However, it doesn't really matter what we think anyway. The politicians are controlled by our military. How often de you hear the comment from our President "I'll let the Generals decide based on the situation on the ground'. Petraus was talking this past Sunday about the 'long' war in Afganastan. 2020 may sound may start sounding good.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  83. mark...in Houston


    How wonderful......another "mission accomplished". One of those is enough !!!

    The Bush administration lied to us, changed, I cant remember how many times, the reasons for being there, sacrificed thousands of our men and women, and put us in debt to the tune of billions of dollars.

    None of it was necessary, it has accomplished...what?

    Leave now, don't look back, and pray we can find leaders someplace that wont try to pull off a stunt like that again

    August 16, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  84. Vivi from NY

    10 years to train a army ? I doubt if they will ever be ready – time to go

    August 16, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  85. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Jack i do not think that Iraq will ever be ready for democracy. You can not force democracy on people that do not want it. These people have lived for thousands of years in the desert under their own set of laws and rules. America swooping in and killing thousands of them and then leaving changes nothing and does not seem a recipe for success and stability. The longer America stays there the more unstable Iraq will become and the poorer our country will become.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  86. Bryan Price in Florida

    What is going to go on in the next 10 years that hasn't gone on the in the past 10? If nothing changes, in 10 years, it will take another 10 years after that. I don't see anything changing for Iraq's future regardless if we pulled out years ago, now, or in another 10 years, it's going to be chaos.

    Otherwise, it's the McCain plan, leave the troops there for 50 years, and by then Iraq will be a defacto US territory.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  87. Debbie

    YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We never should have been there in the first place.


    August 16, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  88. Joseph Feng

    It may take that long to create an army that will prop up the puppet government installed by the US in Baghdad gaainst a popular insurrection. It will not take that logn to produce a military that can and will defend Iraq from foreign invaders from Iran, Turkey, Syria, or any of the other neighboring countries.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  89. Denny from Tacoma

    By our standards the Iraqi army will never be ready. We need to leave as intended and stop our soldiers from spilling their blood over a war that should never have been started in the first place – in the name of imperialism which in Texas is now being called expansionism (true rubbish to hide the real truth).

    August 16, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  90. chris brown st augustine fl

    I believe that we should .we cannot stay there forever. they got use to having Saddam tell them when to eat breath and what to think. we have a whole generation that grew up this way ,and is going to take a long time to change. further more every time that we go in and save somebody afterwards they ignore us and take care of the rest of the world.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  91. Barbara from Los Angeles

    Yes, we should leave ASAP, and let them fail or succeed on their own.

    The same goes for Afghanistan.

    Wasting billions of dollars to pay a horse to drink when it's dying of thirst and it can see the stream, but refuses to bend down and drink, is not how I would spend taxpayer dollars. Better to use those dollars at home to create jobs for all of us, including the shattered minds and bodies coming back from the wars.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:34 pm |
  92. Thom Richer

    Absolutely not. They should leave NOW! They should never have been sent there to begin with. I think Bush, Rove, Rice and Cheney should be sent to replace our troops. They began it...they should end it.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    August 16, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  93. Suzi

    The Prsident is absolutely right, bring our troops home.
    Bush should not have started that war in the first place.
    We can't baby sit with them forever, they have had enough time to stand on their own and fight.
    They don't want us there and, yes, it is time to bring our Troops home.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:46 pm |
  94. Thomas in Texas

    I suggest we send any neocon answering "no" to this over there to help Iraq's army get the job done-maybe under Rumsfeld's command?

    August 16, 2010 at 5:47 pm |
  95. Steve,NY

    I was pretty sure that Obama during his campaign for the Pridency stated that he would have all troops out within 16 months from the time he took office. What happenned?? Another broken promise. He can't blame Bush for this one. As I rember Bush set up the current time table before he left that troops would leave Iraq by 2011.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  96. Griff

    "Yes they should start leaving now, while Obama's pulling the strings. Why wait till next year? Does he actually think he will be re elected?"

    August 16, 2010 at 5:52 pm |
  97. phillip e.medwed

    well, if we are to leave troops in iraq spending billions more dollars then let's start extracting the oil they owe us for putting all that money up. there is no such thing as a free lunch and the iraqi government should start getting that through their heads!!!

    August 16, 2010 at 5:55 pm |
  98. Jorge

    Please as long as there is Oil beneath the ground in Iraq, does anyone really believe that USA Capitalists will withdraw their forces? Be real folks! As long as the youth get suckered into joining this war machine we'll be there.

    August 16, 2010 at 5:56 pm |
  99. Annie, Atlanta

    Didn’t they have an army before Bush invaded? What kind of nonsense is this? And where’s that oil money that was going to foot the bill, by the way?

    August 16, 2010 at 6:02 pm |
  100. Michael Armstrong Sr. Tx.

    Yes we should leave its time Iraq pays for its own safety with its oil resources the whole Muslim plan was to bankrupt America and it worked .

    August 16, 2010 at 6:04 pm |
  101. Chad from Los Angeles

    Military leaders asking for more troops is just standard operating procedure. Why would the Iraqi generals be any different than any other generals.

    At some point the training wheels have to come off so they can at least try to move on without our help.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:06 pm |
  102. darryl

    yes. if you keep feeding a dog it won't learn to hunt. it time we get out of a place we had no reason to be there in first place.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:08 pm |
  103. Tim in Texas

    Lets see, we've been there for seven years fighting a war that we had no business getting into in the first place, combat troops do no good whatsoever in setting up a government, we've probably lost in Afghanistan where we needed to win because we went into Iraq, and the whole thing cost us gobs of money. Let's stay another ten years just for the heck of it. I also like to chew on ground-up glass.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:08 pm |
  104. Ralph Spyer

    Why are we there in the First place ? Did their ships attack our navy,no that was the lie used to get us into Vietnam.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  105. gary saari

    The people in the Middle East region have been fighting each other for thousands of years. Why should we be the policeman of the world? I really don't think that we can force them to like each other by pointing a gun at their heads. It hasn't worked yet and it never will. They can work things out on their own, but they and even most of "we the people" know that the only people getting rich because of this mahem are the war profiteers such as Halliburton (Dick Cheney's favorite), XE, and the oil companies whose interests our brave soldiers are fighting for. Bin Ladin and his people are not there and neither are they in Afghanistan. We can't afford these wars, and we now have to help our own people. We've spent enough money and too much blood. Amen!

    August 16, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  106. Griff

    I didn't get 12 weeks Jack. I got six, and three embarcation, then I was sent to Kenya for two and a half years."

    August 16, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  107. emma texas

    make your mind up folks.....you either want our troops out or you don't. i say bring our troops home......we need our money and our men and women here....... THANK YOU PRES.OBAMA///////

    August 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  108. Frank Cape Coral FL

    I think they can wish for a longer stay, but they have about as much chance to get the Winter Olympics in 2020, as they will get us to stay till 2020. Now Really?

    August 16, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  109. Birddog in Mississippi

    Thank God Obama is president and not McCain and Palin. That's all I can say. McCain would like us to still be in Vietnam and Palin would probably have us at war everywhere in the fricking world. Just send Bush, Cheney, McCain, Palin, Newt and the rest of them over there. I'm sure they will feel right at home in a crazed religiously fanatical ultra-conservative world.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  110. Ken from Little Rhody


    Is that general crazy? The only reason we are there is because of Bush and Darth Vader. We've done more than enough and it's time to bring the troops home.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  111. Alex

    We should leave both Iraq and Afghanistan this year.
    We have wasted thousands of lives and our treasury on these countries who are no friends of the USA. They, together with Pakistan, are run by corrupt and duplicitous politicians and governments.

    If Iraq and Afghanistan want troops on the ground , and their own are totally ineffective – let them hire [and pay for] mercenaries such as Blackwater.

    Alternatively they can revert to their tribal practices and the stone age – and stone each other to death, as is their want.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  112. Brian


    They say when you and a friend are drowning, you should save yourself first before attempting to save your friend. America is drowning, and I'm not even sure if we can call Iraq a friend. We need to save ourselves first and worry about others later.

    Boise, ID

    August 16, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  113. Marian

    Out, yes!!! What;s wrong with those people don't they have any urgency to salvage themselves and their country. We need to get back on track here at home and solve our own domestic mess brought on by this war!! LEAVE, Baby, LEAVE!!!

    August 16, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  114. Let's go ! this is not Vietnam

    I got it, some of the best American soldiers were trained for six months in boot camp plus a few months extra for special training. So bring home all the American troops, and bring about a thousand Iraqi soldiers and Afghan officers here and train . American soldiers need to come home at it! You can't save the world especially in the Middle East.

    August 16, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  115. John

    How is it that our Government and military leaders feel that we can recruit and train our young men and woman in a matter of a few weeks before sending them to Iraq to fight in their war, yet we can't train their military in the 7 years that we have been there so far, and now they want 10 more years? You can't fix stupid! Pull our people out of there and you'll see how fast they will learn to fight their wars

    August 16, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  116. Jean Dolan

    I expect Iraq (and Afghanistan) to implode whenever the US pulls out. I have a personal interest in that family members have and will again serve in both countries.

    What really concerns me is the safety of the troops who are last to be recalled. How can we insure their safety when the numbers are reduced?

    Whenever the troops are leaving, send every available resource and get them all at once

    August 16, 2010 at 6:59 pm |