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August 19th, 2010
05:58 AM ET

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Last U.S. combat convoy has left Iraq

Mosul, Iraq (CNN) - The last U.S. brigade combat team in Iraq has left the country, a move that helps U.S. President Barack Obama reach his goal of 50,000 troops in the country by September 1.

Their departure leaves about 56,000 U.S. troops in the country, according to the U.S. military.

Capt. Christopher Ophardt, spokesman for the 4th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, said the last of the 4,000 members of the unit crossed the border into Kuwait early Thursday.

A few hundred members stayed behind to finish administrative and logistical duties but will fly out of Baghdad later Thursday, Ophardt said.

Much of the brigade departed more than a day ago, but the announcement was delayed for security reasons.

Their departure comes more than seven years after U.S. combat forces entered, though their departure does not signify the end of all U.S. combat forces in the country.

Another 6,000 U.S. troops must leave Iraq to meet Obama's deadline for the end of U.S. combat operations in the country and the beginning of Operation New Dawn, in which the remaining U.S. forces are expected to switch to an advise-and-assist role.

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soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. stan

    Thank God they are finally coming home, cant wait for the rest to follow

    August 20, 2010 at 3:12 am |
  2. sott

    Welcome home, you are our Heroes. You have done your job and thank Obama for this home coming .I believe if the GOP had their way, we would never leave. Let the mosque be built ,no good reason not to build it. Americans wake up. Muslims our Americans too

    August 19, 2010 at 4:11 pm |
  3. Chris TMC

    I was really disheartened with the way you ended your show bashing Sun chips ecologically friendly packaging because its loud, saying to "go back to the drawing board." Theres nothing louder than CNN dedicating months and months of their coverage to the oil spill and going on and on about the environment and blaming BP, but then when theres a company that is doing something that really WILL help the environment you turn it into a joke. That really diappointed me.

    August 19, 2010 at 1:44 pm |
  4. Tyler

    Its to bad we were deceived to enter this war in the first place by the prior president. The war in Iraq was a waste of lives, resources and money and the reason for the war was unclear. America needs to stop being the police of the world and instead needs to concentrate on its own issues. We can no longer afford to be the the world's police.

    August 19, 2010 at 10:50 am |
  5. Robin

    My husband is part of the last combat brigade out of Ft Lewis. I was extremely upset with the interview this morning. I did not catch the man's name but he was way out of line. You do not have to agree with the War, I do not, however those United States Soldiers are doing as ordered by the President of our country to defend our freedom. The Man that was interviewe today would only say Iraqi's were glad to see the US Troops leave......never a thank you for you sacrifice. My children have had 8 months over the last 4 years with their father due to him being in Iraq. Seriously......not even a thank you! Over 4,000 men and women died in efforts to protect our freedom and to help Iraq, how dare you not even say a THANK YOU. You are an ignorant man and should never be allowed on US channels again. As for Kiran, you as an American should have stopped him and been objective. Be proud of your country and your soldiers! You both should be ashamed! I AM PROUD OF ALL OUR SOLDIERS AND THE 4TH BRIGADE, 2 ID RAIDERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 19, 2010 at 10:39 am |
  6. Joe Mulvanerton

    It is the epitome of hypocrisy for President Obama to claim any responsibility for combat troops leaving Iraq. The withdrawal is a direct result of the troop surge. A surge, that then senator Obama vehemently opposed, voted against and said would not work.

    August 19, 2010 at 10:32 am |
  7. Jett

    No surprise here: Obama takes credit for the troop drawdown. This was all a done deal before he took office. the Bush administration had a formal agreement with the Iraqi government concerning a drawdown schedule and complete departure of US Troops. This was done in the final months and weeks of the Bush presidency. Historians take note.

    August 19, 2010 at 10:26 am |
  8. hatch

    i saw a peice on a warrior on his 3rd deployment.. the amount of deployments are adding goverment ownd warrior returnd 4months ago from his 4th in 7yrs.. the time line for the 5th one has already been put into place. he'll be deployed on his 5th when he hits 8yrs in service..knowing the pain coming,,and do it again,just as he will,,[ the only thing that keeps me centerd is knowing as soon as my guy's boots hit dirt someone gets her warrior back,,and some boy somewhere gets to throw the ball with dad.

    August 19, 2010 at 10:26 am |
  9. Lee Denny

    Couldn't find new chip bag topic but here it goes:
    Topic: New Snack Bag

    Look at the bright side; parents will instantly know when Junior is sneaking between meal chips.

    August 19, 2010 at 9:12 am |
  10. Frii

    I like CNN coverage of different points of view. It adds to my thinking or I would just walk through life thinking I'm right all the time.

    August 19, 2010 at 8:56 am |
  11. Marianna

    How can anyone discuss calling black people that degrading word when they call each other that very same word, and then say it's an endearing word!!!! Can't have it both ways, if it's so bad then NO ONE should say it anymore not for ANY reason!

    August 19, 2010 at 8:48 am |
  12. John

    Newt Gingrich continues to demonstrate his lack of character as well as truthfulness with his most recent statements. Comparing the Nazi's, which was a political party to Muslims which is a religion is simply inaccurate. It would have been more accurate to compare the Tea Party to the Nazi's. As stated numerous times before, the Muslim faith did not attack the US it was Al Qaeda. If Americans believe that the Muslim faith should be banned anywhere in America because of the act of criminals, then we should equally ban Catholic churches near Federal buildings because of the criminal act of a Catholic in Oklahoma City.

    August 19, 2010 at 8:46 am |
  13. Jack

    I don't understand why some American's have become so selfish, and narrow minded. Some citizens want to keep those who have lost loved ones at the Twin Towers stuck in the pain they experienced, because they themselves are unable to deal with their feelings about that day; its a powerful feeling to think you are protecting someone and I imagine its makes them feel as if they have some power over the events of that day, but it's unhealthy for those you think you are protecting. To tell those who have lost loved ones that they are incapable of dealing with their grief, and that by not allowing a Muslim center to be built by the Twin towers, we could protect them from experiencing pain is not only demeaning to those who are experiencing the loss of a loved one, but dishonest as well.

    August 19, 2010 at 8:46 am |
  14. vic nashville tn

    Finally it’s done how many twist turn in this war .lot of wrong information given by Bush administration to start the war. Thanks to our president

    August 19, 2010 at 8:42 am |
  15. Peter Shoneye

    I would like to hear the response from those that have lost loved ones at 9-11 tragedy who are oppose to this mosque being built close to ground zero and those that are politicizing the issue and talking about sensitivity and to those 63% pulled in the polls. Would you consider because most white people have in the past terrorize black people, who are racist and treated blacks as animals should not be allowed to build houses around the neighborhood or community of black people today? Even better is it ok for black people to refuse or allow any white to build their homes close to the black community. Would this be less sensitive or will it be acceptable in any way?

    August 19, 2010 at 8:40 am |
  16. Leonard

    Regarding the comment about a Nazi sign beside the Holocaust Museum. Yes, they would have the legal right to put the sign up, as long as it meets local laws. Would it be completely insensitive and appalling? Absolutely!

    August 19, 2010 at 8:29 am |
  17. Ronny

    Why doesn't TJ Holmes and CNN address this "problem" in the whole? Why only one-sided? Why isn't black Americans calling white people crackers and honkies on TV all the time part of the conversation? How can anything get "resolved" if half the conversation is left out?

    August 19, 2010 at 8:24 am |
  18. Ralph Beach

    Yes, People are right in saying the Mosque should be built anywhere they choose to put it, but think about it this way...."911"

    August 19, 2010 at 8:13 am |
  19. Ken McBride

    Welcome home to the troops, bring them all home! The Bush Iraq War was and is a War Crime! Iraq was not a threat to the U.S. and had nothing to do with 9/11! However, as long as Fox News continue to repeat the LIE, many of the Tea Party will continue to believe the Bush lies of WMD and involvement in 9/11!

    August 19, 2010 at 7:28 am |
  20. art

    Thank you to President Obama for fulfilling another campaign promise.

    I know it did my heart good to see the images of our combat forces leaving Iraq last night. Of course, the images were soon accompanied by a host of other descriptors such as "yellowcake", no WMD, "I'm the decider", and, again, the haunting spectres of Abu Ghraib. 73% of Americans were for this war at its inception. Will they turn their backs on these fighting men and women as they did with Vietnam veterans? I'm asking because those who stood to gain the most from the war in Iraq certainly did nothing to ensure their return home would be supported when they went about the business of decimating an economy, pension plans, health care, the housing market, and monies for education.

    You're not going to be able to keep your responsibilities for the bloodshed at arms length for much longer. The Bush tax cuts are going away, and it's an election year.

    August 19, 2010 at 7:19 am |
  21. Tasha in Orlando

    I see a similarity between the town's participation in the stoning of the couple by the Taliban and the Spanish Inquisition. I doubt anyone liked the Inquisition, but it had local support because of fear. (Wonder why noone on television has drawn this parallel? Are they still afraid of the powerful Church?)

    August 19, 2010 at 7:09 am |
  22. Ronny

    Barry Obama making claims about "combat troops" leaving Iraq. Just changed the label on combat troops to "support" troops. Troops are still THERE. Typical politician speak. Nothing more.

    August 19, 2010 at 7:06 am |
  23. Ralph Beach

    The Mosque funding should come from the pockets of the ones who want it built and not come from Tax paying Americans!

    August 19, 2010 at 6:57 am |
  24. Ralph Beach

    I am happy to see our Troops are coming home...I wish ALL of them were!

    August 19, 2010 at 6:53 am |
  25. Ronny

    Good Morning CNN!

    All US troops should leave Iraq ASAP. Bring them home and put them on the border where they are actually needed.

    There shouldn't even be a debate over the Mosque being built. Let's have a debate over every American's right to the first Amendment. Let's strip every American that is complaining about the Mosque of THEIR first Amendment rights.

    Who cares who's funding the Mosque if it can't be proved al queda or the like is? Stop making baseless accusations just to enflame the public Jewish owned CNN.

    August 19, 2010 at 6:46 am |
  26. Joshua Wertheim

    This debate over whether a Mosque should be built in lower Manhattan is disgusting. I am Jewish and lived in NYC on 9/11, and I still think the Mosque should be built. Or, let's change the Constitution: no Catholic churches in Oklahoma City because Timothy McVeigh was Catholic and no Shinto Shrines near Pearl Harbor. If the number 1 selling car in Israel can be Mercedes Benz after what the German Nazis did, I think we can show a little tolerance here to the 99.99% of Moslims who are not members of Al Queda and use this to let the healing begin, instead of exploiting it to widen the divide.

    August 19, 2010 at 6:12 am |