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Iraq

The Takeaway

Top of the Hour: Iraq's Future for Iraqis; Morning Headlines

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

After combat troops leave, what is next for Iraq in the country's search for a peaceful future? That and this morning's top headlines.

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The Takeaway

Agenda: Peace Talks, Jobs, Auto Sales

Monday, August 30, 2010

We look ahead to this week of Middle East peace talks, a new jobs report, and auto sales numbers. On Tuesday, President Obama will address the nation from the Oval Office as combat operations in Iraq officially end. On Wednesday, we'll hear about auto sales numbers for August, and on Thursday, a new round of Middle East peace talks will begin. Friday brings the anticipated jobs report from the Labor Department.

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WQXR News

Series of Attacks in Iraq Kill More Than 50

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Iraqi authorities say at least 54 people have been killed in the country, following a series of attacks this morning. The Associated Press reports that insurgent militants targeted Iraqi security forces throughout the country, launching suicide and car bomb attacks.

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The Takeaway

Insurgents Attack Police Targets in Iraq

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

In Iraq, insurgents launched what seems to be a coordinated wave of attacks on police forces this morning as the American military prepares to switch from combat operations to a training and assistance role in the country. Almost all of the targets were police stations and police checkpoints.

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The Washington Report

WQXR's The Washington Report

Monday, August 23, 2010

David Sanger, of The NYT, weighs in on U.S. combat troops pulling out of Iraq and why Pres. Obama is getting heat for going on vacation.

The Takeaway

Why is Iraq Safer Than Venezuela?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Venezuela has become an extremely dangerous place to live. The country is about the same size as Iraq, but was plagued by four times the number of murders in 2009. According to The New York Times:

"In Iraq, a country with about the same population as Venezuela, there were 4,644 civilian deaths from violence in 2009, according to Iraq Body Count; in Venezuela that year, the number of murders climbed above 16,000."

And the crime rate is continuing to rise.

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The Takeaway

Two Military Wives on the End of Operation Iraqi Freedom

Thursday, August 19, 2010

For wives of the 4th Stryker Brigade, the waiting game is over – their husbands are coming home. But there are still 50,000 troops left in Iraq. With the troops and equipment tasked to combat gone, the future of the troops who stay behind will rely heavily on local Iraqi forces.

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The Takeaway

The Media and U.S. Troops Leaving Iraq

Thursday, August 19, 2010

According to White House officials, combat in Iraq ends on August 31, 2010, yet Brian Stelter, media reporter for The New York Times, wouldn't blame you if you thought that yesterday was the official end to Operation Iraqi Freedom. All the news channels, led by MSNBC, reported that the last U.S. combat brigade left Iraq yesterday. We'll take a look, along with Brian, at the media's coverage of yesterday's historic event.

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The Takeaway

Planning for a Civilian-Managed Future in Iraq

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The last U.S. combat brigade rolled out of Iraq and into Kuwait last night. 50,000 training and support troops remain, but they, too, are scheduled to leave Iraq by the end of 2011 when the State Department will assume responsibility for training Iraqi police. The U.S. has already begun to transfer control of security operations to Iraqi civilians, but several military experts predict thousands of additional troops will still be required after 2011 to ease the transition.

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The Takeaway

A Baghdad Resident on US Troops' Departure

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The last convoy of U.S. combat troops left Iraq overnight, moving into Kuwait under cover of darkness. Today, how are Iraqis feeling about the war? Is it over? Are they relieved, or worried about combat troops leaving when the country remains in politicial turmoil? We're joined by Lubna Naji, a 24-year-old medicine studies graduate from Baghdad, who tells us about her own feelings on the current situation there. She says, "They had a good strategy for war. they did not have a strategy for what's going to happen after the war."

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The Takeaway

Ambassador Hans Blix on the 'End' of the War In Iraq

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The last convoy of U.S. combat troops left Iraq last night under cover of darkness. 440 troops of the 4/2 Stryker Brigade crossed into Kuwait, leaving behind another 56,000 U.S. service members in support and training roles. 6,000 are scheduled to withdraw by September 1st; another 50,000 will remain behind into 2011. 

Ambassador Hans Blix, former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, led a team of UN inspectors into Iraq before the 2003 invasion, searching for weapons of mass destruction. They found none, but the invasion went ahead as planned. 

Read a full transcript.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Iraq: The Impasse

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Joost Hiltermann, contributor to the New York Review of Books and the Middle East and North Africa Deputy Program Director at the International Crisis Group, discusses Iraq's political climate in the four months since its elections and the fear of a Baath Party resurgence. His article "Iraq: The Impasse," in the New York Review of Books summer issue, explains the apparent stalemate in the formation of a new government and explores this precarious stage in the country's development.

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The Takeaway

Suicide Bomber Attacks Baghdad as US Prepares for Withdrawal

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A suicide bomber struck a crowd of 300 people this morning in Baghdad.  Jane Arraf, a reporter for the Christian Science Monitor was at the scene. She says that a young man with explosives strapped to his legs blew himself up in the crowd of people who had gathered to apply for coveted jobs with the army. Araf says that it seemed like security was lacking.

Saad al Mutalibi, an Iraqi government spokesperson also responds to the attack. He maintains that his country will be more secure without U.S. forces, and that the attaack is not linked to the withdrawal of troops.

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The Takeaway

Suicide Bomber Strikes Baghdad

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A suicide bomber attacked a busy army recruitment center today in Baghdad where a large crowd was waiting in line to apply for work. The attack comes ahead of the U.S. military's planned drawdown of forces. The BBC reports that as many as 50 people are dead after the blast. Stephen Farrell, reporter for The New York Times updateds us on the bombing from Baghdad.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Back from Iraq

Thursday, August 12, 2010

David Finkel, national enterprise editor of The Washington Post and author of The Good Soldiers, talks about spending time with U.S. soldiers in Iraq and upon return after their service.

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The Takeaway

The Future and Legacy of the Green Zone

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Green Zone was established in Baghdad when U.S. troops invaded in 2003, and since then it has come to symbolize much of the American presence, both in Iraq and abroad. It is a fortress, a city within a city, and the headquarters of both American power and the Iraqi government.

Today we take a look at the Green Zone’s future and legacy as American troops continue their withdrawal from Iraq, and whether the Green Zone needs to be dismantled in order for the country to have true sovereignty.

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The Takeaway

As Combat Operations in Iraq Draw to a Close, Advice from Veterans for Returning Troops

Friday, August 06, 2010

Operation Iraqi Freedom will draw to a close on September 1st, 2010. As American forces transition from combat operations into the stability operations of Operation New Dawn, we're thinking about the troops who will be coming home.

Just this month, 13,000 troops will return home to the U.S. That's the equivalent of one 747 every day. By the end of next year, all 50,000 remaining troops will come home.

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The Takeaway

In Kurdistan: No Friends But the Mountains...and the U.S.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

All week long, we've been focusing on Iraq, where American forces are drawing down this month. We've heard mixed opinions from Iraqis and analysts who say Iraq still lacks stability, infrastructure and a functioning government. Now, we turn to Kurdistan, where the view is altogether different from the rest of Iraq. For Kurds, the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 was largely positive. For decades Kurds had suffered repression and abuse under Saddam Hussein's regime.

But what happens when the U.S. pulls out?

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The Takeaway

Re-examining the Costs of the Iraq War As Drawdown Nears

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

President Obama has announced his commitment to draw down American forces in Iraq after seven years of combat. There will be 90,000 fewer troops in Iraq by the end of next year. But will the costs – financial, human, emotional – come down as the troops come home?

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The Takeaway

Life in Baghdad is 'Barely Tolerable'

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

As the U.S. prepares for a full drawdown of troops in Iraq, we check in with Lubna Naji, a recent graduate of Baghdad Medical School. She says she is less concerned with the withdrawal of troops from her country than the restoration of services like electricity and water supplies. Life there is "barely tolerable," she says.

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