January 21st, 2009
03:22 PM ET

How to get out of Iraq carefully

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/meast/01/19/iraq.violence/art.iraq.gi.jpg caption="A U.S. soldier plays with a boy Monday while on patrol in Babil province, Iraq."]

Peter Bergen
CNN National Security Analyst

What should President Obama do to build on what is widely acknowledged to be Iraq's fragile peace?

As Obama has frequently observed, the United States needs to be "as careful getting out of Iraq as it was careless getting in" because, unlike the case of Vietnam, the United States has substantial strategic interests in Iraq.

The country sits on the world's second largest oil reserves, is close to Israel, plays a lynchpin role in regional stability in a part of the world that sets global energy prices, and its reversion into a failed state would be a prelude to al Qaeda regrouping there.

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Filed under: Inauguration • Iraq • Peter Bergen • President Barack Obama
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Michael

    Well I really don't think there's a way out of iraq this fast, and for soldiers to come home like heros like EX-President Bush said. We really didn't win a war, instead we lost lives and a lot of money... a lot of money I recall!

    January 22, 2009 at 8:56 am |
  2. Cindy

    Is there truly a way to get out of Iraq carefully!? I don't think so...not entirely. We will always have to have a residual group there just like we do elsewhere in the world. So we will never truly be out of Iraq!


    January 21, 2009 at 4:11 pm |