President Obama and Iraq

Toward a Responsible Troop Drawdown.

The book explains why insurgents ceased attacking U.S. forces in Iraq and turned against al Qaeda, and how the U.S. drawdown can be achieved while preserving gains of the political-military surge.

Professor Raymond Tanter headed a fact-finding delegation to Iraq to interview Sunni Awakening members, Iraqi Shiites, Iraqi and American officials, and the Iranian opposition based in Iraq. This book explains why insurgents ceased attacking U.S. forces in Iraq and turned against al Qaeda, and how the U.S. drawdown can be achieved while preserving gains of the political-military surge. If the withdrawal fails to keep Awakening members from defecting to al Qaeda because of clashes between the Awakening and Iraqi Security forces, gains of the surge will be in jeopardy. Reconciliation with those at the fringes of the insurgency, as in Iraq, is likely to be a centerpiece of the U.S. strategy for Afghanistan. An Afghanistan-Pakistan strategy that reaches out to warlords who have formed alliances of convenience with the Taliban would depend on finding a mediator who has good relations with both NATO forces and those warlords who might be reconcilable.

Publication Date: September 30, 2009