About the Symposium
The war in Iraq is "a supremely serious American initiative whose outcome will have equally serious implications for the ability of the United States to act in the world and influence events in the world in the coming years," said Steven Simon, Council on Foreign Relations Hasib J. Sabbagh senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies, at a recent Council symposium, Iraq's Impact on the Future of U.S. Foreign and Defense Policy. Though the symposium's four sessions focused on different facets of U.S. policy affected by the war, speakers continually considered current options for the United States in Iraq. Most participants identified three main choices: immediate U.S. withdrawal, gradual U.S. withdrawal, or the partition of Iraq into three autonomous regions that would then lead to a U.S. exit. But Michael Gordon, the New York Times' chief military correspondent, asked, "Why do you assume we get out?"
This symposium was made possible by the generous support of the Hauser Foundation.