COPY-Cheney visits Iraq, pushes for political unity

Associated Press - March 17, 2008 11:03 AM ET

BAGHDAD (AP) - Vice President Dick Cheney has warned against large drawdowns of U.S. troops in Iraq that could jeopardize recent security gains in security.

Cheney spoke Monday at a news conference in Baghdad with U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker and Gen. David Petraeus, the top commander in Iraq. Given the nearly 4,000 U.S. troop deaths and billions of dollars spent on the war, it is very important that "we not quit before the job is done," the vice president said.

Cheney credited reductions in violence to President Bush's decision to deploy an additional 30,000 troops to the war zone. He said 1 of Bush's considerations in whether to draw back more than the 30,000 will be whether the U.S. can continue on a positive track toward political reconciliation and stability in Iraq.

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