January 25, 2024

U.S. and Iraqi governments expected to start talks on future of US military presence in the country

Source: CNN

Journalists: Natasha Bertrand, Oren Liebermann

Jonathan Lord, the director of the Middle East security program at the Center for New American Security, told CNN that the US needs to transition its support for Iraq toward building “a lasting and sustainable military capacity in the [Iraqi Security Forces], to avoid another 2014. That hasn’t happened.”

“If we leave now, with no plan in place, we’re sending the patient back out on the street, with no plan to stay healthy,” he added, comparing the initial anti-ISIS intervention to an emergency room hospital stay. “Chances are, if things go bad, they’ll end up right back there. And it’s the most expensive, least efficient way to help them.”

On Tuesday, following the latest round of US strikes in Iraq, a spokesperson for the prime minister said in a statement that the strikes are “undermining agreements and various sectors of joint security cooperation” as the two countries are working to “reshape the future relationship.”

Read the full story and more from CNN.


  • Jonathan Lord

    Senior Fellow and Director, Middle East Security Program

    Jonathan Lord is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Security program at CNAS. Prior to joining CNAS, Lord served as a professional staff member for the House Arme...