So the United State's Iraq war and occupation will finally end this year. The military's pipe dream of keeping troops in the "independent" Iraq is not to be.
The U.S. signed an agreement to get out way back in 2008 under George W., but our generals and hawks always thought they'd somehow find an excuse to maintain U.S. forces in that unfortunate country. After all, now that we'd thoroughly trashed the place and touched off a civil war, they must still need our "help." Right?
Wrong. There's a bitter satisfaction that the ostensible reason why troops will now go turns on a question of law. The war was always an assault on legality itself, begun on the basis of made-up evidence of non-existent weapons without U.N. sanction. In a just world, our politicians might have found themselves hauled into a court, charged as were Nazi leaders with "making aggressive war." Now the U.S. military is departing because the Iraqis refuse to exempt their future behavior from prosecutions in Iraqi courts. Guess Iraqis want their country back, complete with the power to enforce their own laws.
Juan Cole explains:
It's hard to imagine a peaceful or happy future for this still war-torn country. But at least it will be Iraqis sorting it out. The U.S. is leaving, ignominiously.