Paterson visits U.S. troops in Iraq

December 21, 2008 11:46:50 AM PST
New York Gov. David Paterson is making a holiday visit to U.S. troops in Iraq and says he is overwhelmed by the camaraderie of the service members. Paterson flew to Iraq with Reps. Steve Israel of Long Island and Anthony Weiner of Queens, both Democrats. Also on board were Reps. Tom Cole, R-Okla., and Ed Whitfield, R-Ky.

In a conference call with reporters Sunday, Paterson said the troops are grateful to the elected officials for the visit.

Weiner said things are improving in Baghdad but it's still a depressing place, with remnants of all-out war everywhere.

Israel said this is his sixth visit to the region and he's seen things go from bad to worse to better, which means it's time for the U.S. to wind down its commitment there.

As of last month, there were more than 10,000 New Yorkers serving in either active duty military, national guard or reserves in Iraq and Kuwait.

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