Pelosi: Shift of Mission of U.S. Forces from Combat to Training an Essential Element of Success in Iraq

March 12, 2007
Press Release

Washington, D.C - Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement today on a news story in The Los Angeles Times today that American military planners have begun planning a strategy for Iraq that includes a gradual withdrawal of forces and a renewed emphasis on training Iraqi fighters:

'The transition of the mission of U.S. forces from combat to training is an essential element of redeploying our troops and is at the heart of the Iraq proposal the House Appropriations Committee will consider this week.  The fact that the Department of Defense is making plans to support a decision to do the same thing is an extremely significant development in the national debate on the best way forward in Iraq.

'A shift in mission will allow the number of U.S. troops in Iraq to be reduced, diminishing their presence in the daily lives of Iraqis, and minimizing the chances of these troops being caught in the cross-fire between rival Iraqi factions.

'Success in Iraq requires more than military force.  Numerous military leaders, including the commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, have said that the war cannot be resolved militarily, but instead will only be solved through diplomatic, economic and political means.'