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July 6, 2011 at 2:44 PM

Iraq, the 51st state

Posted by Ryan Blethen

Remember presidential candidate Obama’s pledge to get out of Iraq? Most people do. He made a big deal about it during the campaign. As is the case with many presidents, the things left behind by the previous administration are too shiny and tempting to get rid of. The Iraq war is yet another Bush administration hold over that president Obama can’t seem to bring himself to jettison.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the Obama administration might leave as many as 10,000 soldiers in Iraq if the Iraqi government requests the extended presence. Obama said we would be out of Iraq by the end of the year. There is always the chance Iraq will say “thanks, but no thanks.” I doubt it. If U.S. officials are floating the idea now it probably means the talks have begun. Spencer Ackerman has a post at his Attackerman blog with all sorts of comments from generals and the administration suggesting that we need to cement our presence in Iraq.

We have no business staying in Iraq. We shouldn’t have been there in the first place. Obama must live up to his campaign promise to get us out of Iraq. We have wasted too many lives and too much money. It is time to leave the rebuilding of Iraq to Iraqis and turn our attention to fixing our own country.

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