I have interviewed 14 policy analysts from ten European countries regarding the US debate on Iraq. In a nutshell the main conclusions are:
1. European analysts largely support sustained US military involvement in Iraq. A sudden withdrawal or public announcement of a timetable was considered dangerous by a majority of those questioned.
2. Europeans feel that America is not doing enough to draw Syria and Iran into the nation-building process. However, there is no consensus on whether or not this is an achievable goal.
3. The Soft-Partition Plan, which is gaining traction among American policy makers, is an issue of fierce debate in the European discussion on Iraq. Most experts are resigned to the possibility that it is the only logical political option, but it by no means enjoys majority support.
During this highly politicized period in the U.S. debate, these European views might of interest as an outside perspective.
In the past, Europeans have strongly criticized the US policy in Iraq, but now we don't want you to pull out. I find it newsworthy, because it indicates that Europeans still believe that the US is able to stabilize Iraq, while more and more Americans doubt whether the US can end the civil war and the insurgency.The conclusions are published at Atlantic Community: Europeans Want America to Stay in Iraq and have been written by yours truly and my colleagues at Atlantic Community: Niklas Keller and Will Nuland. I have also asked a few more questions, which will be the topic of two more articles to come.