Iraq: Washington to strengthen presence of NATO to disengage militarily from Baghdad 

The approval of the US’ allies to strengthen the role of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) mission in Iraq, indicates Washington’s intention to “disengage” militarily from Baghdad. However, those allies have asked the US administration to maintain its military engagement in the region to combat Daesh.
A European diplomat stated that: “The transfer of responsibilities to NATO has always been a precursor to the US’ military disengagement,” citing two examples: the Kosovo Force (KFOR) and the Resolute Support Mission (RSM) in Afghanistan.
The diplomat stressed that: “This will only work if the NATO mission includes a strong US component.” The US troops currently account for half of the 16,000 soldiers affiliated with the RSM.
He indicated that the US’ request to hand some training activities designated to the Iraqi forces, over to NATO on behalf of the international coalition to defeat Daesh, falls within this context.
US president, Donald Trump, announced his intention to reduce his country’s military presence worldwide and withdraw from many areas of operations, especially in Africa, Latin America and the Middle East, to focus his efforts on Asia, in the context of confronting China.
However, the situation changed with the escalation of tension with …

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