Washington, DC – House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-Mo.) released the statement below on the redeployment of all U.S. combat forces from Iraq and on the transition to stability operations in Iraq:


“Our brave men and women in uniform have done magnificent work in Iraq against monumental odds and often in horrendous conditions, and we should take this moment to thank them and their families for their selfless service.  Our military involvement in Iraq is not over, but today we move one step closer to bringing all of our troops home.  We have kept our word to draw down our troops to 50,000 by the end of August 2010, and I hope for the best for the Iraqi people as they continue to assume responsibility for their security and their political future.


 “I also want to congratulate the commanders of our mission in Iraq, in particular General Odierno and his team, for their work drawing down the levels of U.S. troops and equipment.  Our military has not moved so many men and so much equipment so quickly since at least Vietnam, and I am unaware that we have ever done so as smoothly and with as few errors.  Any endeavor so complicated will have some problems, but so far the drawdown has been a tremendous, if overlooked, success.”