Q&A Friday #10: Will We Have Permanent Military Bases In Iraq & Afghanistan?
Question: “Do you think the United States will have bases of some sort in Iraq and or Afghanistan like they do in Germany and Japan among other places in the world?” — Sonic
Answer: Yes, I do. Afghanistan is a strategic location, the people generally like us there, and we need to have a home base to hunt Taliban & Al-Qaeda dead-enders for another couple of years at least.
Keeping bases in Iraq will be more controversial, but initially, we’re going to need to have a presence there for a few years to make sure Iran, Syria, & Turkey don’t get any funny ideas about making land grabs in Iraq. Moreover, Iraq is another strategic location, one that puts us near Iran and Syria, two nations we need to pay particular attention to as we persuade them — one way or the other — to get out of the terrorism business.
Will we have bases in Iraq long-term? That’s a harder call that will probably depend on Iraqi politics & public opinion over the next few years. For now, the Iraqis need us to guarantee that they’re not going to get invaded. Five years from now, that may no longer be a serious concern and the government may ask us to hit the road.
But, for the moment, keeping bases in Iraq (and Afghanistan) is the right call.