Endspiel in Irak und Afghanistan

NEW YORK – Seit fast einem Jahrzehnt wird die amerikanische Außenpolitik von den Kriegen in Irak und Afghanistan dominiert. Zum Jahreswechsel 2011 sieht es, zumal immer noch 50 000 US-Soldaten in Irak sind und weitere 100 000 in Afghanistan, nicht unbedingt danach aus, als würde sich diese Ära ihrem Ende zuneigen. Doch ist es so.

Irak, der zweitteuerste „Krieg der Wahl“ (nach Vietnam) in der amerikanischen Geschichte, erreicht für die Vereinigten Staaten zurzeit einen Belastungsgrad, der keine beträchtlichen militärischen und ökonomischen Ressourcen mehr verschlingen und keine große innenpolitische Aufmerksamkeit mehr erhalten wird. Voraussichtlich werden alle US-Truppen Irak bis Ende 2011 verlassen.

Selbst wenn mehrere tausend Soldaten bleiben, was wahrscheinlich erscheint, wird ihre Anzahl gering sein und ihre Rolle sich darauf beschränken, irakische Militär- und Polizeikräfte zu beraten und auszubilden und Einsätze gegen Terroristen durchzuführen. Acht Jahre, 4300 amerikanische Gefallene und über eine Billion Dollar später werden es – mit allen Vor- und Nachteilen – vor allem die Iraker sein, die die Zukunft ihres Landes bestimmen.

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