U.S. General Drafts Troop Withdrawal Plan For Iraq

WASHINGTON (AP) - The top U.S. general in Iraq has made initial recommendations about how to begin withdrawing the nearly 150,000 U.S. forces there.

General Raymond Odierno has told senior Pentagon leaders how he thinks the U.S. should comply with terms of the security agreement recently signed by the U.S. and Iraq. The agreement calls for American fighting forces to be out of Iraq by 2012.

A senior military official says General David Petraeus, who has overall responsibility for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, helped lay out the plan late last week. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because Odierno's plan has not been made public.

Odierno foresees a gradual withdrawal over that three-year period. But President-elect Barack Obama has said he wants to be out inside 16 months.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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