Obama Smacks Down GOP, “American combat troops will not be fighting in Iraq again.”


In a statement/press conference at the White House today, President Obama made it clear that Republicans are not going to get their way. American combat troops won’t be returning to Iraq.

Video: (No longer publicly available)

During his statement the president said that his administration is working to secure embassy personnel. He added that the US is increasing their intelligence and security forces, and working with Congress to provide additional security equipment, and additional advisers. Obama added, “American combat forces will not be returning to Iraq.” The president also announced that his administration is moving resources closer to Iraq, and they will take action to target terrorists. He said that he will will work with Congress and the Iraqi government on this. Lastly, he announced a new diplomatic effort. The president said, “Above all the Iraqis must rise above their political differences.” President Obama added, “There is no military solution inside Iraq certainly one that is not led by the United States.”

The president said, “The most important question we have to be asking the question that I keep front in center is what is in the best national security interests of the United States.”

Obama was asked about confidence in Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki, and the president repeated that Iraqis have to solve their own problems through the political process.

CNN asked about mission creep and this being the start of more combat troops in Iraq, and the president said, “American combat troops will not be fighting in Iraq again.” The president made it clear that he didn’t want to send troops back into Iraq, and that the Iraqis have to solve their own problems. Obama listed interests from humanitarian to combating terrorism as good investments, but he added, “that does not foreshadow a larger commitment of forces fighting in Iraq.”

The president was asked if he wishes that he would have left a larger residual force in Iraq. He answered that the decision wasn’t his. The Iraqi government made the decision. The president added that the US government has provided the Iraqi government vigorous assistance over the last five years.

Obama’s announcement today was a byproduct of both his meeting with congressional leaders yesterday and an answer to the resurfacing of the Bush administration neo-cons who are calling for a return of combat troops to Iraq. The drumbeat for a return to war is being ignored by this president. A poll released two days ago found that the American people are siding with President Obama on Iraq by a nearly two to one margin.

The majority of Americans are tired of war and they have no taste for spilling more blood in Iraq. It was important for President Obama to lay out his plan today, because the resurfacing of Dick Cheney and the other architects of the invasion of Iraq is certain to make some people nervous.

The message from this White House was clear. The warmongers can stomp their feet all they want, but for as long as Barack Obama is president, combat troops won’t be returning to Iraq.

31 Replies to “Obama Smacks Down GOP, “American combat troops will not be fighting in Iraq again.””

  1. i was listening to CNN and one of the talking heads was already trying to spin the advisers in Iraq as Americans being put into combat.

    I can’t remember her name but she said that having these advisers in harms way in Iraq was the same as putting troops into battle.

    One way or another the right will find fault with anything our President does.

    SOS, different day.

  2. Apparently the GOP profits, made off of fashion-accessory-class Hummers, pretend helmets, and NO BODY ARMOR for *O*U*R* Soldiers in Iraq, weren’t enough to stand against this President and, thus, to buy what the GOP wants from the private money that runs the world.

  3. For me President Barack Obama is the island of reason, intelligence, and sanity in a sea of arrogance, ignorance and bigotry. I am so happy we have a president that thinks before he acts. If he were allowed a third term he would have my vote.

  4. I am still uneasy about sending in advisors. What will be their advise? Before you run away at least take your weapons with you.

    If the Iraqui army wont stand and fight and Maliki is the problem which is the consensus then there is nothing we can do

  5. I remember back in the late 60s I had a favorite T shirt that said; “What if they held a war and nobody showed up?” Maybe they should bring those shirts back.

  6. The 300 advisers are there to help quickly train with weaponry. Watch the coverage again to help get a clear perspective.

  7. That’s all well and good but they had 8 years to learn how to use the weapons and what good is learning how to use them when at the first sign of trouble they threw them away, turn tail and ran?

  8. Pigs can fly. I wouldn’t believe it myself but for once they make some sense. I give you The American Conservative

    A Warmonger By Any Other Name
    Anne-Marie Slaughter thinks the U.S. should bomb in Iraq and Syria. She starts off her argument with some complaining:

    For the last two years, many people in the foreign policy community, myself included, have argued repeatedly for the use of force in Syria — to no avail. We have been pilloried as warmongers and targeted, by none other than President Obama, as people who do not understand that force is not the solution to every question.
    Read More

  9. Will the GOP ever lose their taste for wars or starting wars? I can’t imagine the number of wars the US would be involved in right now if we had a GOP president instead of President Obama who acts with grace, dignity & diplomacy.

    The GOP’s short sightednes regarding war astounds me. They’re always ready to start a war but should the brave men & women who serve our country in a war, servive & return home they find that they’re treated like “takers” for applying for their well deserved Veterans benefits – only to find that VA funding has been slashed by non-other than the GOP.

  10. The conservatives always wonder why we get angry over their statements. Intelligence comes from careful thought and research. Something the neo-cons don’t seem to care do. Instead, they rather rehash the same old propaganda over and over. So it requires a smart man like Obama to stand his ground and remind them of the truth once again. I find myself on several conservatives pages having to post copies of certain facts proving counter to their comments. It gets so exhausting. I am thinking you may do the same.

  11. I heard a report from an adviser in Iraq comment how Maliki has not done a good job bringing all the factions together. And as Obama said he needs to work on uniting Iraq and hopefully the advisers will relay how important his government needs to basically “get their act together”

  12. Bringing all the factions together is an understatement:
    Nouri al-Maliki’s divisive rule helped create crisis in Iraq

    Iraqi leader has governed with an iron fist, alienated segments of the population, experts say

    What people fail to realize at the time Maliki was trained in Iran and had a hatred for the Sunni’s. Remember the ethnic/religious cleansing of Baghdad? The only thing that stopped him or should I say slow him down was the presence of American Troops. Once we left there was nothing stopping him and maybe that’s the reason he refuse to signed the SOFA

  13. You’re right. The weapons are for our (U.S.) protection. What CAN be done to change the way this country treats various groups so poorly and have done so for hundreds of years. How can they regain their trust.

  14. Jay Carney ZINGED at today’s presser talking about the WSJ op-ed.

    Reporter: “Cheney wrote: Never has a president been so wrong….”

    Carney (interrupting): “Which president?”

    Press corps laughter ensues.

  15. They cant. Remember Iraq was a country thrown together to protect BP/British oil interest. The only solution is to break it up in three pieces. Which Turkey will be pissed because I don’t see them allowing a independent Kurdish nation. The Sunnis will have no oil. And no one want a Shia Iraq align with Iran.

  16. Here’s What the Battle Over Iraqi Oil Means for America
    President Obama says energy is playing a role in America’s response to the crisis.

    As deadly sectarian violence continues to sweep through Iraq, the country’s oil industry is reeling from a brazen attack on one of its key domestic refineries. Here are five things you need to know about the role of oil in the current conflict, and what it means for the United States and the global economy.
    Read More

  17. The neocons and the rest of the warmongers are SOL on this one. The President is not sending the U.S. back to Iraq. Who thought dragging chicken-hawk Cheney out of his crypt was a good idea? Trotting out the old “gang” to beat the war drum on the airwaves is disgusting. Nobody in their right mind can possibly think wading into the middle of a Sunni-Shia Jihad is a good idea. We’ve seen that movie and it’s a horror flick.

  18. One of the thing that makes me so angry is watching video of the Iraqi military members (30,000) throwing down the billions of dollars in arms we gave them in face of the ISIS militants (800).

    One other thing that makes me angry is that sons and daughters of the rich and famous and the teevee pundits don’t serve in the military.

    Why aren’t the 5 sons of Mitt joining up to serve their country? The people who benefit the most are to cowardly to sacrifice for their country.

    Every male member of my family serve in the military, some even in actual battle but the fortunate sons get a free pass.

  19. You just spoke for millions of us who see through this charade from day one. Why Mr.47% sons don’t serve? Well what do you expect from someone to past out pro war flyers and then ran like the coward he is to play in France. Mormon mission my ass, plus he admitted that his sons patriotic duty was to help him get elected than they doing their duty for country.

    Now if one choose not to serve that’s their business but don’t go around cheerleading a war that you as a coward have no intention of serving.

    As for the Iraqi Army I have made my point about that. Its a fools errand to think that 300 special forces is going to give them something that they lack. Courage

  20. For people in my age group (65+).

    I’m getting FLASH BACK to the MILITARY ADVISERS sent to VIETNAM. How did that work out for us???? It pulled our Country Asunder. It is true History repeats it’s self.

  21. Just shoot me and get it over with

    Ahmad F*CKING Chalabi? Seriously?

    Over the past two days the American ambassador, Robert S. Beecroft, along with Brett McGurk, the senior State Department official on Iraq and Iran, have met with Usama Nujaifi, the leader of the largest Sunni contingent, United For Reform, and with Ahmad Chalabi, one of the several potential Shiite candidates for prime minister, according to people close to each of those factions, as well as other political figures.

    For those who have forgotten Ahmad F*CKING Chalabi is a convicted embezzeler,fed Dick Cheney lies, like he needed them and suspected spy for Iran when he was suppose to be helping us. Oh I forgot had some sort of spell over the blood gurgling chickenhawks and talked them into the fantasy that invading Iraq was going to be a cakewalk.

    Don’t shoot me just a triple dose of heroin will do. You cant make this shit up

  22. The more you read(something conservatives should do instead of watching faux) the more you find out about what’s happening in Iraq. Remember this name:QassimSuleimani.
    There is a excellent diary up on Kos that opens with this:As you brush up on your Persian/Farsi that’s written قاسم سلیمانی‎. Remember him.

    Suleimani, 57, holds rank as Major General in the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard. His job in this life is that he leads Qods, which translates directly as The Force. This is the unit that handles operations outside Iran.
    Read More

    This will get very interesting to say the least

  23. The only way the GOP will ever get the taste for war removed is when the American people force the GOP to send their own kids to fight on the front line of the wars they start an their kids start coming home in body bags then maybe they will stop starting wars.

  24. Let’s face it’s this is all about protect the oil that George W Bush and Dick Cheney stole from Bin Laden an the Iraq people. If they want to protect what they stole they can hire some mercenary to protect it for them at their expense and not at the expense of more US troops. An as far as the GOP goes, if the GOP want to help Bush and Cheney so bad the GOP and their kids can go help them protect the stolen oil.

  25. I guess the GOP doesn’t think they made enough money on the first Iraw War (i.e. Haliburton, Black Hawk) @@ I think the President is right. These people in the Middle East have been fighting for thousands of years. Nobody will change that stepping in with military action. They need to learn to solve their own problems.

  26. Man has had a problem with pulling out since day one. Should have let Hussien stay in power until he died naturally or by the hands of his own people. We could have fully concentrated all our efforts on Afghanistan and made real progress. Unfortunately all the poor men and women of our own country and more have sacrificed their lives for nothing, absolutely nothing…that’s a crime in itself.

  27. Vietnam mission creep began with military advisors – advisors are combat troops and will be engaged in combat. Using drones is a commitment of U.S. military force.
    The U.S. should not get involved in this civil war again – we will never learn our lesson that military force is not going to work in the Middle East.
    All you Obama apologists would be totally against these commitments of U.S. military if someone like Bush was doing it – I am against it no matter which war mongering party does it. Democrats and Republicans both are pushers of military action as the primary U.S. foreign policy tool. Stop the war mongers who have no problem with spending trillions of dollars we don’t have and our sons and daughters to die (so long as they aren’t the sons and daughters of the rich and powerful) and have no problem with killing 10s of thousands of civilians as collateral damage. End the imperial wars now.

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