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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

UK: No longer willing

For years, I've been documenting the collapse of the "coalition of the willing" in Iraq. Soon, Britain will no longer have troops in Iraq. The BBC reports:
Prime Minister Gordon Brown has indicated that almost all British troops should leave Iraq by the middle of next year, with a few hundred possibly remaining to train Iraqi security forces.

Previously it had been suggested that troops could start leaving in January.

However, the BBC has learned that the process is likely to begin in March - six years after the US-led invasion.
Of course, Britain's withdrawal is different from earlier defections in the coalition. Conditions on the ground in Iraq are apparently much-improved and the UK is mulling over the diversion of its troops to Afghanistan. Thus, the UK can claim "mission accomplished" and demonstrate its willingness to help the US in the war on terror.

Note also that in 2007 PM Gordon Brown announced the withdrawal of half of British troops.

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