At Senate confirmation hearings last Thursday, Secretary of Defense designate Leon Panetta said he expects the Iraqi government to request that some U.S. troops stay in Iraq. Combat operations in Iraq ended nearly one year ago but 47,000 U.S. troops remain in the country. In the coming weeks, the U.S. military will begin turning off the lights on the Iraq mission, and the logistical and political implications could be profound.   Dr. Nora Bensahel is a Deputy Director of Studies and a Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security. She weighs in on whether the United States will have a permanent presence in Iraq, even after the withdrawal.

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