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Barack Obama restated his pledge to end the Iraq war by the summer of 2010, arguing that the U.S. must focus on defeating Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of Iran.
The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, in a speech delivered ahead of a trip to the Middle East, said Tuesday in Washington, D.C., that the United States is still at risk of a terrorist attack, but the Iraq war has become a burden on the country that only diminishes security.
“This war distracts us from every threat that we face and so many opportunities we could seize,” Obama said. “By any measure, our single-minded and open-ended focus on Iraq is not a sound strategy for keeping America safe.”
Obama stressed several opportunities he said were lost as a result of the war, and reiterated that he will give the military a new mission if he is elected president: “ending this war.”