For Immediate Release
Are Generals Disputing Iraq Pullout?
Do disagreements amongst top generals and Obama on Iraq pullout plan represent a more profound debate?
WASHINGTON - With
President Obama's plan to "withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq within 16
months" being met with resistance by top U.S generals, The Real News
spoke to historian/investigative journalist Gareth Porter to discuss
the implications of this internal disagreement.
Porter says that Obama's 16 month withdrawal plan, "generated
a good deal of resistance within US command both in Baghdad and from
General Patraeus at CENTCOM in Tampa Florida. Petraeus let it be known
that they felt it was too risky and that they favored a longer plan to
While U.S. command claims that without a U.S. presence in Iraq
major conflicts will breakout, Porter feels that conflict in this
region is an
inevitability and that "U.S. troops frankly are not going to be able to
prevent (it)." While top generals are offering an alternate 23 month
withdrawal plan, Porter makes it clear that regardless of having a 16
month or 23 month plan, "there will be fighting in the future over..oil
Porter offers an alternate perspective stating that, "the 23 month
plan, which Odierno and Petraeus are now backing is really kind of a
front," noting that it is basically a continued attempt to prolong what
would essentially be a permanent presence by the U.S. in Iraq. Porter
references a recent interview with Odierno showing that the interest of
the U.S. command isn't a 23 month plan but a continuation of presence.
"Odierno said look, we're going to need to stay here long beyond
2011...I would like to have a force of 30 or 40 thousand troops (here)
in 2014 and 2015."
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