Iraq: Post-Saddam Governance and Security [Updated April 18, 2008]   [open pdf - 433KB]

"The Administration believes that the current strategy -- 'conditions-based' gradual reductions in U.S. forces and continued building of Iraq's security forces -- is likely to produce a central government able to defend itself. However, some in Congress believe that the progress is modest and unsustainable without high levels of U.S. forces, and that winding down U.S. combat involvement in Iraq would compel Iraqi leaders to reach needed political compromises. Partly because there is a perception that the troop surge is succeeding, there has not been the required level of support in Congress to mandate a troop withdrawal, a timetable for withdrawal, or a significant change in U.S. strategy, although there appears to be growing support for compelling Iraq to fund key functions now funded by the United States. Some see the September 2007 passage of a Senate amendment to the FY2008 defense authorization act (P.L. 110-181) supporting a decentralized, 'federal' Iraq as an effort to build bipartisan consensus for an alternative strategy. This report is updated regularly. See also CRS Report RS21968, Iraq: Reconciliation and Benchmarks, by Kenneth Katzman; CRS Report RL31833, Iraq: Reconstruction Assistance, by Curt Tarnoff; CRS Report RL31701, Iraq: U.S. Military Operations, by Steve Bowman; and CRS Report RL33793, Iraq: Regional Perspectives and U.S. Policy, coordinated by Christopher Blanchard."

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CRS Report for Congress, RL31339
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