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American troops will be out of Iraq in just three weeks, leaving the world's largest embassy and an uncertain legacy. We hear some disturbing assessments of what the future might bring. Also, US-Iranian tensions over drone continue to escalate, and thousands of physicists wait for news of the "God Particle."

Banner image: US Army soldiers carry their bags to shipping containers as they prepare to leave Camp Adder on December 6, 2011 at Camp Adder, near Nasiriyah, Iraq. Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Making News US-Iranian Tensions over Drone Continue to Escalate 7 MIN, 38 SEC

President Obama has formally asked Iran to return the unmanned surveillance drone that crashed on its territory. President Ahmadinejad today said he wants an apology before he even considers that possibility. On Venezuelan state TV he said, "We now have control of this plane." Josh Gerstein is White House reporter for Politico.com.

Josh Gerstein, Politico (@joshgerstein)

Main Topic Iraq: After American Soldiers Are Gone 36 MIN, 53 SEC

Republican candidates are roasting President Obama for leaving Iraq too soon, but it was George W. Bush who negotiated withdrawal by the end of this year. Out of 170,000 US troops that have been to Iraq in the past nine years, 4500 Americans died and 32,000 were wounded. In three weeks, the 6000 that are left will be gone too. The dollar cost was $823 billion. Tomorrow, at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, the President will give thanks for the sacrifices that have been made for what he once called "a dumb war." Have both administrations been more concerned about domestic politics than policy in the Middle East? Did the deaths of 100,000 Iraqi civilians mean US troops had to go? Can Iraq's armed forces keep the peace?  Is Prime Minister Maliki another strong man?



Liz Sly, Washington Post (@lizsly)
Anthony Cordesman, Center for Strategic and International Studies
Feisal Istrabadi, Indiana University (@csme_iu)
Lawrence Korb, Center for American Progress Action Fund (@LarryKorb)

Reporter's Notebook 'God Particle' Stays Tantalizingly out of Reach 6 MIN, 17 SEC

The theory called "particle physics" says the universe is a vacuum full of particles, including protons and electrons. The big mystery is why the particles have mass. The search for the so-called "God Particle" has led to "the biggest manhunt in the history of physics," with two competing groups composed of thousands of scientists each. They've been sifting data from the Large Hadron Collider, near Geneva. This morning, thousands of other scientists around the world were waiting for word of what they've been able to find, according to Dennis Overbye, who writes about science for the New York Times.

Dennis Overbye, New York Times

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