Troops to Leave Iraq in Historic War's End

President Obama speaks about the end of war in Iraq and America's Future.
3:14 | 12/17/11

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Transcript for Troops to Leave Iraq in Historic War's End
This week marked a historic moment in the life of our country and our military. For nearly nine years our nation has been at war in Iraq. More than one point five million Americans have served there would honor skill and bravery. Tens of thousands have been wounded. Military families have sacrificed greatly. None more so than the families of those nearly 4500 Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice. All of them. Our troops veterans and their -- We'll always have effects of a grateful nation. On Thursday the colors are armed forces fought under a rock were formally cased -- ceremony in Baghdad before beginning their journey back home. Troops are now preparing to make their final -- crossed the border out of the country. Rock's future will be in the hands of its own people. Or were there will be -- All of our troops will be out of Iraq. And this holiday season all of us can finally say. Welcome home. This is an extraordinary treatment one made possible by -- hard work and sacrifice of the men and women who have the courage to -- And there's a lesson to learn from that a lesson about our character as a nation. See there's a reason our military's most respected institution in America. I don't see themselves -- -- shut as Democrats first Republican spurts. They see themselves as Americans first. For all of our differences all of our disagreements. They remind us that we are all part of something bigger. We are one nation and one people. And for all our challenges -- remind us there's nothing we can't do when we stick together. -- the finest our nation -- off. Many will remain in the military and go on to the next mission. Others will take off the uniform and become veterans but their commitment to service doesn't end when they take off the uniform. In fact I'm confident the story of their service to America is just beginning. After years of rebuilding Iraq it's time -- our veterans and all -- people in the work of rebuilding America. Folks like my grandfather came back from World War II to form the backbone of the largest middle class in history. And today's generation of veterans the 9/11 generation -- veterans. His arm with the skills discipline and leadership to attack the defining challenge of our time. Rebuilding an economy -- hard work pays off responsibilities rewarded if anyone can make it if they try. Now it is up to us to serve these brave men and women as well as base -- us. Every day they meet their responsibilities to their families and their country. Now it's time to meet ours especially those of us who -- sent to serve in Washington. This cannot be a country where division in this -- stand in the way of our progress. -- a moment where we must come together to ensure that every American has the chance to work for decent living on their own home. Send their kids to college and securities retire. This is a moment for us to build a country that lives up to the ideals that so many of our bravest Americans fought and even died. -- the highest obligation as citizens. That is the welcome home our troops does. --

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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