Wash. Times posted AP article falsely claiming Obama now "calls for a troop drawdown process that could last 16 months"

››› ››› TOM ALLISON

The Washington Times website posted a version of an Associated Press article falsely asserting that Sen. Barack Obama "has gone from hard-line opposition to the war to more nuanced rhetoric that calls for a troop drawdown process that could last 16 months." In fact, as other versions of the AP article noted, Obama has long advocated withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq in a process that "could last 16 months."

The Washington Times website posted a version of a July 8 Associated Press article that falsely asserted of Sen. Barack Obama: "On Iraq, he has gone from hard-line opposition to the war to more nuanced rhetoric that calls for a troop drawdown process that could last 16 months." In fact, contrary to the article's suggestion that Obama has changed his position, Obama has long advocated withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq in a process that "could last 16 months."

In a September 12, 2007, speech in Clinton, Iowa, Obama called for a withdrawal of "one or two brigades each month" bringing all troops "out of Iraq by the end of next year." From the September 12 speech:

Let me be clear: there is no military solution in Iraq, and there never was. The best way to protect our security and to pressure Iraq's leaders to resolve their civil war is to immediately begin to remove our combat troops. Not in six months or one year -- now.

We should enter into talks with the Iraqi government to discuss the process of our drawdown. We must get out strategically and carefully, removing troops from secure areas first, and keeping troops in more volatile areas until later. But our drawdown should proceed at a steady pace of one or two brigades each month. If we start now, all of our combat brigades should be out of Iraq by the end of next year.

The version published by the Times was released on the AP's State & Local Wire.

By contrast, USA Today and The Kansas City Star published versions of the AP article that noted that Obama "has long called for a troop drawdown process that could last 16 months":

On Iraq, he has gone from a boisterous end-the-war call that endeared him to the left flank to more nuanced rhetoric. He has long called for a troop drawdown process that could last 16 months. Last week, he said his upcoming Iraq trip might lead him to refine, but not basically alter, his determination to pull U.S. troops out of combat in Iraq and that the safety of U.S. troops and the stability of Iraq might force him to adjust his timetable. It's a potentially flexible formulation that has troubled liberals even though he's said throughout his candidacy that the nation needs to be careful leaving Iraq.

Posted In
National Security & Foreign Policy, War in Iraq
Network/Outlet
The Washington Times
Stories/Interests
Barack Obama, 2008 Elections
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