July 5th, 2009
11:36 AM ET
5 years ago

Biden: U.S. intends to meet Iraq withdrawal timetable

The vice president visited with U.S. troops during his recent visit to Iraq -- including with his son, Army Capt. Beau Biden, pictured here with the vice president.
The vice president visited with U.S. troops during his recent visit to Iraq - including with his son, Army Capt. Beau Biden, pictured here with the vice president.

(CNN) - The U.S. government intends to have all its troops out of Iraq by the end of 2011, and it's up to the Iraqis to make that timetable work, Vice President Joe Biden said.

In an interview with ABC News' "This Week" during his trip to Iraq that ended Sunday, Biden said a collapse by Iraq into civil war once U.S. troops depart would be "a tragic outcome."

President Barack Obama remains committed to withdrawing combat troops by the end of August 2010 and all U.S. forces out by the end of 2011, he said.

"That is our intention," Biden said, noting that Iraqi elections scheduled for early 2010 would offer the nation an opportunity for a major step forward.

"It is our expectation that election will come out peacefully," he said.

On another issue, Biden refused to speculate on what the United States would do if Israel decided to attack Iran's nuclear facilities.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has indicated such a strike could happen if Israel believes international efforts to curtail Iranian nuclear weapons production are failing.

Iran insists its nuclear program is intended solely for peaceful purposes.

Biden said Israel has the right as a sovereign nation to act in its own interests.

"We cannot dictate to another sovereign nation what they can and cannot do," he said.

The United States will continue working with allies to engage Iran in talks on halting its nuclear program, Biden said.

Participants in the so-called P5-plus-one talks have invited Iran to take part, he said, and it was up to Iran on whether to join in or remain isolated from the global community.

"There is no pressure from any nation that's going to alter our behavior with how to proceed what we believe is in the national interest of the United States, which we also believe is in the best interest of Israel," Biden said of the proposed talks.

The P5-plus-one includes the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council - Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States - along with Germany.


Filed under: Iraq • Israel • Joe Biden
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Kevin in Ohio

    "On another issue, Biden refused to speculate on what the United States would do if Israel decided to attack Iran's nuclear facilities" .....

    That's because this administration does not have a clue what it would do. Maybe give a speech or something like that......

    July 5, 2009 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  2. toli

    thank you to you and your son. god bless all of you.

    July 5, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    it's Obama's war now Joe. make it count

    July 5, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  4. Zero.

    Your dreaming again! Iraq will get worse. USA is going for the big-fall.

    They will be a little country in another 20yrs...

    July 5, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  5. jaye

    I love Joe Biden – he's a true American.

    July 5, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  6. kathy

    wonder how many politicians sons/daugthers are in these wars? interesting to know. this is still Bush war, he started it and left us a big mess. we the good citizens of this country are paying for his blunders, I dont care who's in office now, this admin didn't start it and 911 happened on Bush watch and no one elses.

    July 5, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  7. Simmy

    They should have been out yesterday.......How can anyone justify them staying in a place they're not supposed to be? It's like the stranger who invites him/herself to dinner, then turns into 'the thing that would not leave'.......Bring the troops home.....And find jobs for them before they get here!!!!! Thank God for blessing America!!

    July 5, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  8. Reality

    Obama during the primaries: I will bring all the troops home immediate, it is all Bush's fault.

    Obama during the election: I will bring all the troops home on Bush's existing timetable using Bush's existing plan, but it is still Bush's fault.

    Obama the president: Bush's surge worked in Iraq but I am going to take credit for it because I won, and my ego lets me do whatever I want. I am going to move America's troops from one war that we almost won to another war we cannot win.

    All this administration is doing is following Bush's lead. And bowing to Saudi kings..

    July 5, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  9. Susie

    Just heard that OHbama's war on Afghanistan is Different??? Yeah, our guys will die later than the OTHER wars??? What is so different about THAT???

    July 5, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  10. bimmer

    Biden and Hillary are true patriots.

    Barack and Michelle not so sure. They love America after most voted for them, not before.

    July 5, 2009 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  11. Danny/Texas

    Kevin in Ohio, you hit the nail on the head !!!

    July 5, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  12. Willy Brown

    Beau look like he thinking "darn it I voted for McCain".

    July 5, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  13. Limbaugh is a liberal

    Kevin of Ohio: 'That's because this administration does not have a clue what it would do. Maybe give a speech or something like that……'
    You mean do exactly what Bush Jr. did about both Iran and NK for the past eight years? All talk and NO action?

    July 5, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  14. John Starnes Tampa Florida

    Over 1 million Iraqis, and 4,300 US troops have died due to a self-proclaimed "Christian" president ordering an invasion without cause and by using deception....yet some of us wonder why some Muslims would hate the U.S. I hope I live to see Bush and Cheney and his cronies face treason and war crimes charges.

    July 5, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  15. lkb

    I see the oBama administration mirroring Clintons foreign policy and strategy and we all know how well that worked. It didn't and ended with enough terrorists to pull off 9/11. These men are all talk and don't have a clue how to handle the tough situations. Obviously, Iran and Nkorea think Obama is a joke! How can you take a man serious with no experience and he has now neutered the sec of state position. God help this country! There is no way he would know what to do if Isreal bombs Iran's nuclear facility

    July 5, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  16. renea

    GOD BLESS YOU AND THE WHOLE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION! and I Thank you for your hard work and your effort in trying to fix this country in its many challenges please dont give up though its tough im praying for the administration.

    July 5, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  17. Robin

    First we have a President who tells the world "Americans are arrogant".

    Then we have good Ole' Joe who thinks it sounds corny to say "I'm proud to be American".

    And then we have a First Lady who prior to 2008 was never proud of her country.

    What patriots we have serving in the White House.

    Wow. Just Wow.

    July 5, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  18. Tom

    So, the "combat" troops will be out of Iraq, but when will they all be out? The last I checked the only places we have actually left since 1945 are Grenada and Vietnam. That is over 64 years of occupation of Japan, Italy & Germany. Do we plan on leaving any of them?

    July 5, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  19. Samuel

    This guy makes Dan Quayle look like Albert Einstein. I guess he was a Rhode Scholar and that makes him more intelligent than biden/obama put together.

    July 5, 2009 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |