Several months after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, not much seems to have changed for US strategy in the Middle East.
It still seems as if the United States wants to withdraw completely from the region, even if there appears some slowness in this plan, and it is trying by all means to reach some kind of agreement with Iran.
Is this the true and complete picture of the American strategy in the Middle East, and why does America want to withdraw as long as it is directly in the service of Russia and Iran?

Some resources for those who are not following the US strategy in the middle east and claim US was not withdrawing!
Trump Orders Withdrawal of U.S. Troops From Northern Syria
Trump is right to take troops out of Syria. Now they must leave Iraq and Afghanistan
US combat forces to leave Iraq by end of year

  • 2
    "It still seems as if the United States wants to withdraw completely from the region" - how so? I was under the impression that they were only going to withdraw from Afghanistan (and, indeed, have already done so), but I haven't heard anything about them withdrawing from other Middle-Eastern states.
    – F1Krazy
    Jul 13 at 21:19
  • US actively planned and do withdraw from both Iraq & Syria and it was done partially, that was not a secret but looked like the official plan and was always on the media by US officials. such statements disappeared after the Russian invasion but nothing on the ground look changed, it is like pausing the withdrawal, that's why I asked how this strategy was impacted
    – Jagar
    Jul 13 at 21:31
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    – Community Bot
    Jul 13 at 22:49
  • 1
    Who is "it" in the last sentence?
    – Fizz
    Jul 14 at 4:26
  • @Community the problem and question is clear; how the Russian invasion impacted the US strategy in me
    – Jagar
    Jul 15 at 18:08

1 Answer 1


It still seems as if the United States wants to withdraw completely from the region

It's unclear what you mean by that, but the US has regained interest in the ME, particularly when it comes to oil, not necessarily for itself, but for its European allies... which are facing the difficult problem of cutting those ties with Russia.

So, Biden is now on a tour that includes Saudi Arabia, although the US insists it's not going "hat in hand" for oil. The ceasefire in Yemen, agreed earlier this year gives the US a bit of cover to claim that indeed relations with the Saudi-led coalition are improving.

Regarding withdrawal from Iraq, I don't know if anything has changed, but the article you've linked to said:

President Joe Biden says US forces will end their combat mission in Iraq by the end of this year, but will continue to train and advise the Iraqi military. [...]

Numbers of US troops are likely to stay the same but the move is being seen as an attempt to help the Iraqi PM. [...]

Political parties aligned to Iran have demanded the withdrawal of all forces from the US-led global coalition against IS, despite the continuing threat posed by the Sunni jihadist group.

Which doesn't sound like a real withdrawal was planned. And according to Wikipedia (citing a Dec 9, 2021 Reuters article), that's what happened:

The U.S. formally concluded its combat mission in Iraq on 9 December 2021, leaving the 2,500 troops remaining in the country to serve as trainers and advisors to the Iraqi security forces.

As for Syria, you've linked to Trump's announcements from 2019. Those had already been implemented to a large extent before Biden came to office. I'm not sure what Biden's announced strategy is for Syria, if any was made public, but troops were still there in late 2021, and came under some attacks.

According to a Reuters article from this month:

The United States has roughly 900 troops in Syria, mostly in the east of the country splintered by a decade of civil war, although President Joe Biden's administration has yet to detail its long-term plan for the eight-year-old mission.

  • I am commenting on the military presence on the ground, handing over everything to everyone else, and the strategy in general, there are no official statements on this since the Russian invasion, it looks like the US wants to change this and considers it as a mistake (personal conclusion), the new visit of Biden looks like the only update on this plan, and still not clear what it will bring
    – Jagar
    Jul 15 at 18:14

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