Iraqis Take Last U.S. Base

Ahmad al-Rubaye, AFP / Getty Images

Iraqi officials took command of a military base outside of Nasiriyah on Friday, marking the official completion of the U.S. war in that country. Just some 4,000 American troops remain in Iraq, a number that will shrink to less than 200 in 2012, down from a peak of 170,000 service members in 2007. "Today we are turning the last page on the occupation,” said Hussein al-Assadi, the Iraqi official in charge of base transfers. A low-key ceremony marked a transfer that another Iraqi official deemed a “day of freedom” for the country. Tens of thousands of Iraqis were said to have died in the American occupation that began in 2003, which claimed around 4,500 American lives and displaced nearly 2 million Iraqi citizens.