In response to President Barack Obama's address to the nation last night, Georgia's senior senator said today the American military draw down in Iraq marked a turning point in the 7-year-old war, and a victory for the United States and the Iraqi people.
But Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Georgia, said the United States should be cautious and would support a continued military presence were it needed past the 2011 withdrawal date if violence were to flare up across the war-torn nation.
"Working together, the Iraqis and the U.S.-led military coalition turned the tide of insurgency and reduced violence in Iraq, allowing for a gradual draw down of U.S. forces," Chambliss said in a statement. "However, American involvement in Iraq will not end today. Iraq remains a nation at risk, with forces both in and outside Iraq seeking to undo the significant progress Iraqis have made"
Obama told the nation Tuesday night it was time to "turn the page" to a new chapter in American involvement in Iraqi affairs, and pledged to further reduce the number of troops, now 50,000, in Iraq.
Chambliss noted the accomplishments of Georgia military units that were deployed to Iraq during the war, citing the U.S. Army's 3rd Infantry Division and the Georgia National Guard's 48th Brigade. Both units served multiple tours in the war.