At the same time, our engagement must be both comprehensive and strategic. It should extend beyond near-term threats by appealing to peoples’ aspirations for justice, education, and opportunity and by pursuing a positive and sustainable vision of U.S. partnership with the region. Furthermore, our relationship with our Israeli and Arab friends and partners in the region extends beyond our commitment to its security and includes the continued ties we share in areas such as trade, exchanges, and cooperation on a broad range of issues.
Complete a Responsible Transition as We End the War in Iraq: The war in Iraq presents a distinct and important challenge to the United States, the international community, the Iraqi people, and the region. America’s servicemen and women, along with our coalition partners, have performed remarkably in fighting determined enemies and have worked with our civilians to help the Iraqi people regain control of their own destiny. Going forward, we have a responsibility, for our own security and the security of the region, to successfully end the war through a full transition to Iraqi responsibility. We will cultivate an enduring relationship with Iraq based on mutual interests and mutual respect.
Our goal is an Iraq that is sovereign, stable, and self-reliant. To achieve that goal, we are continuing to promote an Iraqi Government that is just, representative, and accountable and that denies support and safe haven to terrorists. The United States will pursue no claim on Iraqi territory or resources, and we will keep our commitments to Iraq’s democratically elected government. These efforts will build new ties of trade and commerce between Iraq and the world, enable Iraq to assume its rightful place in the community of nations, and contribute to the peace and security of the region.
We are pursuing these objectives with a strategy that has three core components.
••Transition Security: First, we are transitioning security to full Iraqi responsibility. We will end the combat mission in Iraq by the end of August 2010. We will continue to train, equip, and advise Iraqi Security Forces; conduct targeted counterterrorism missions; and protect ongoing civilian and military efforts in Iraq. And, consistent with our commitments to the Iraqi Government, including the U.S.-Iraq Security Agreement, we will remove all of our troops from Iraq by the end of 2011.
••Civilian Support: Second, as the security situation continues to improve, U.S. civilian engagement will deepen and broaden. We will sustain a capable political, diplomatic, and civilian effort to help the Iraqi people as they resolve outstanding differences, integrate those refugees and displaced persons who can return, and continue to develop accountable democratic institutions that can better serve their basic needs. We will work with our Iraqi partners to implement the Strategic Framework Agreement, with the Department of State taking the lead. This will include cooperation on a range of issues including defense and security cooperation, political and diplomatic cooperation, rule of law, science, health, education, and economics.