Washington, DC – Nevada Senator Harry Reid released the following statement today after the final U.S. brigade combat team departed Iraq:
"Today is an important day for the people of Iraq and for the brave men and women who have defended American interests in Iraq for the last eight years. As our last U.S. brigade combat team leaves Iraq, we salute them for the heroism, courage and dignity that they have displayed since the beginning of this conflict. In Nevada, we lost 36 service members during the course of our involvement in Iraq, and we still grieve with their families every day. Our troops and security forces have done everything that has been asked of them and beyond, and now is the time for the people of Iraq to take the lead in defending their young democracy.
"We know that today’s developments do not end our involvement in Iraq completely. We still have tens of thousands of men and women on the ground that will support the Iraqi forces and we know they will continue to face serious threats on a daily basis. We will support these troops to ensure they are able to perform their duties and remain safe. We stand united behind our forces as they continue to defend our nation bravely and defeat terrorists around the globe.
"We are ever mindful of the challenges that lie ahead to complete our mission in Afghanistan. President Obama and his national security leadership team have put in place a plan that has already yielded some positive results in Afghanistan, and I will continue to work with the President to ensure that he has the necessary support to protect our nation and that our troops can be successful in their mission."