...Meanwhile, Iraq Goes from Bad to Worse...
Relevant

Losing the peace in Iraq

We won the war in Iraq and now seem to be losing the peace and any gains we could have made in the region. Al Qaeda linked insurgents have taken over one of the major cities in Northern Iraq, Mosul.

Extremist militants have overrun the northern city of Mosul, the country's second-largest. As many as half a million civilians have fled their homes to escape the violence, and the brazen incursion has highlighted all the weaknesses of the government's ability to maintain security

When we began to help the Iraqis put together a coalition government that included all the members of their diverse population, we had to promise to stay out of their domestic politics. That led to an agreement to fully remove US forces from the country. The expectation was we would renegotiate the deal once the Iraqis were more comfortable with self-government. That never happened and it seemed that the Obama administration made almost no effort to gain such a deal. Consequently, the country has been slipping and now seems to have fully entered another civil war.

We have maintained US forces in Germany, Japan and Italy since we won WWII.  These are all fully functional democracies and allies. We still have troops in Korea and their presence has been a major stabilizing force throughtout the past 60 years. The decision to abandon Iraq was a major mistake that the Iraqis, the rest of the region and we are now paying for.

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