Withdrawing from Iraq: Alternative Schedules, Associated Risks, and Mitigating Strategies

Withdrawing from Iraq: Alternative Schedules, Associated Risks, and Mitigating Strategies


By (author) Walter L. Perry, By (author) Stuart E. Johnson, By (author) Keith Crane, By (author) David C. Gompert, By (author) John Gordon, By (author) Robert E. Hunter, By (author) Dalia Dassa Kaye, By (author) Terrence K. Kelly, By (author) Eric Peltz, By (author) Howard J. Shatz

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  • Publisher: RAND
  • Format: Paperback | 206 pages
  • Dimensions: 176mm x 250mm x 24mm | 481g
  • Publication date: 30 October 2009
  • Publication City/Country: Santa Monica, CA
  • ISBN 10: 0833047728
  • ISBN 13: 9780833047724
  • Illustrations note: black & white tables, maps, figures

Product description

Since 2007, security has improved dramatically in Iraq. The U.S. and Iraqi governments - and most Iraqis - want to see both the U.S. presence there reduced and the Iraqi government and security forces assuming a greater role in providing for public security. The challenge is to effect this drawdown while preserving security and stability in the country and in the region. In response to tasking from the U.S. Congress, RAND researchers conducted an independent study to examine drawdown schedules, risks, and mitigating strategies. They identified logistical constraints on moving equipment out of the country, assessed trends in insurgent activity and the ability of Iraqi security forces to counter it, and examined the implications for the size of the residual U.S. force and for security in Iraq and the region. This book presents alternative drawdown schedules - one consistent with the Obama administration's stated intentions and two others, one somewhat slower and another faster - that are responsive to these factors. It also recommends steps that the United States can take to alleviate anticipated constraints, overcome likely resistance, and reduce the potential risks associated with a drawdown. For more than 60 years, decisionmakers in the public and private sectors have turned to the RAND Corporation for objective analysis and effective solutions that address the challenges facing the nation and the world.

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Author information

Walter L. Perry is a senior information scientist at the RAND Corporation. He specializes in research on command and control, network-centric operations, and counterinsurgency operations. He holds a Ph.D. in information technology from George Mason University, an M.S. in operations research and an M.B.A. from Tulane University, and an A.B. in mathematics from Northeastern University. Selected publications include Analytic Support to Intelligence in Counterinsurgencies and Exploring Information Superiority: A Methodology for Measuring the Quality of Information and Its Impact on Shared Awareness and his recent project work is focused on minimizing the threat from improvised explosive devices.

Flap copy

In studying the withdrawal from Iraq, RAND assessed logistical constraints, trends in insurgent activity, and the implications of the readiness of Iraqi security forces on the size of the residual U.S. force and on security in Iraq and the region.

Table of contents

Summary; Introduction; Drawdown Scheduling; Logistics Factors and Constraints Affecting the Drawdown; Internal Security and Stability; Regional Effects; Risk Mitigation; Conclusion; Appendixes; Bibliography.