25 August 2007
British to withdraw from Basra palace base next month
It looks as if the British will leave the one remaining base that they hold in the city of Basra and retreat to the airport. From there they will be able to do nothing to influence events in the city, short of mounting a full scale assault to recapture it from whichever militia group takes power after they leave.
As a face saver the announcement will be made by the Iraqis, so that the British can claim that they are leaving at the request of the Iraqi government. However, if past performance is any guide, we can expect to see the former base thoroughly looted just as soon as the British army leaves.