July 1, 2009
The withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq's cities yesterday was the beginning of an end scheduled to be completed by 2012, when all American forces must leave that country. It's hard to see that happening now, with the situation tenuous; four U.S. soldiers were killed Monday, and at least 24 Iraqis died in a car bombing yesterday. But it will have to get a lot worse to alter the timeline for withdrawal. The American public is ready to quit Iraq, and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki wants to prove he's his own man before facing an election.
November 4, 2006
President Bush and his top aides repeatedly have said that as Iraqi security forces are ready to guard their country on their own, U.S. forces would be reduced. Implicit in that assertion is that the United States would be properly preparing Iraqi security forces to stand on their own. A new report from the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction suggests otherwise. The report says thousands of weapons the United States has provided Iraqi security forces cannot be accounted for, and spare parts and repair manuals are unavailable for many others.
August 26, 2011 |
BAGHDAD - Bombs killed at least 15 people Thursday in Iraq, including eight police officers and a soldier, in the latest strike against Iraqi security forces as U.S. troops prepare to leave. Gunmen attacked a police station Thursday in Karmah, 50 miles west of Baghdad. After exchanging gunfire with the policemen, the gunmen withdrew and a car bomb exploded near the police station, killing five police officers, officials said. About 30 minutes later, a parked car bomb exploded near a police checkpoint in a village outside Fallujah, 40 miles west of Baghdad.
May 18, 2010 |
German captain Michael Ballack will miss the World Cup because of torn ligaments in his right ankle, a serious blow to the three-time champions less than a month before the tournament. The 33-year-old Chelsea midfielder was hurt during his club's 1-0 FA Cup final victory over Portsmouth on Saturday. Ballack's ankle is in a cast, and the German soccer federation said yesterday he won't be able to train for at least 8 weeks. A full recovery is expected. The injury probably robs Ballack, Germany's three-time player of the year, of his final chance to win the World Cup. Noteworthy Iraqi security forces have detained an al-Qaida militant suspected of planning an attack targeting the World Cup, an official said.
December 17, 2004 |
Despite heavy fighting in recent months, most of Iraq remains relatively stable and the country is on track to hold elections by Jan. 30 and achieve a stable government by the end of 2005, the U.S. commander of multinational forces in Iraq said yseterday. Gen. George Casey's assertions were among the most unequivocal to date by a senior military officer with firsthand knowledge of conditions in Iraq since the insurgency gained steam a year ago. Casey conceded that more combat lay ahead and that opposition to the fledgling Iraqi government was well-organized and determined, but he said those problems would be overcome.
April 1, 2006 |
U.S. military deaths in Iraq during March hit a two-year low, even as religious and ethnic violence between Iraqis skyrocketed. According to Pentagon statistics, 30 American service members died during the month, the lowest level since February 2004, when 20 troops died. All but four deaths were by hostile fire. The number of deaths attributed to roadside bombs, which remain the overall top killer of U.S. forces, was 12, the lowest in a year. The March numbers could still go up; the military often reports deaths days after they occur.
January 31, 2005 |
Although he had toiled for weeks mulling every contingency, Capt. Rodney Schmucker figured there was an even chance he would be spending election day shooting it out on the streets with insurgents and cleaning up after suicide bombers. Instead, he and his men from the First Cavalry Division in southern Baghdad whiled away large blocks of time yesterday waving to jubilant Iraqi civilians and jostling with children in what often felt like a giant carnival. It was a pleasant surprise - but it didn't come by happenstance.
October 2, 2004 |
It was one of the more obscure flash points in Thursday night's debate, but the stark contrast between portrayals by President Bush and Sen. John Kerry of progress in training Iraqi soldiers and police to take over from Americans is fraught with meaning for the occupation. Both candidates agree that a stable Iraq can be achieved only when Iraqis themselves take responsibility for defeating the insurgency and maintaining public order, and that only then can U.S. troops begin to withdraw.
September 15, 2010 |
BAGHDAD - Iraq might be running a budget surplus, but that doesn't mean it should spend it, U.S. officials said Tuesday, arguing that the Iraqi government's finances are too fragile for it to pay a greater share of its security costs. The Obama administration commented in response to a new U.S. government study that found that Iraq had a surplus of $52.1 billion at the end of 2009, including $11.8 billion available to be spent. The study by the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, provided ammunition to lawmakers who have argued that the United States should not run up its own budget deficit to bankroll the Pentagon's military training mission in Iraq.
January 25, 2007
Want to know what the leader of the free world sounds like when he has to beg? Find President Bush's State of the Union speech on the Internet and listen to him ask Congress and Americans to support his new military plan in Iraq. He pleaded for them to trust his decision to send more than 20,000 additional U.S. troops into Baghdad and Anbar province to quell worsening sectarian violence. "Our country is pursuing a new strategy in Iraq, and I ask you to give it a chance to work.