photo Tara Benwell Listen to News with Tara Benwell - Instructions:
1. Preview the vocabulary and read the gapfill text.
2. Play the news report and try to fill in the blanks.
3. Answer the comprehension questions by writing full sentences.
4. Use the discussion question to write an essay or discuss the story with other students.
5. Click "show Answers" to see the full text.
6. Pretend to be a news anchor by reading each story out loud.

dateline: 20 December 2011

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Final US Troops Leave Iraq

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • convoy: a group of military troops and vehicles
  • dictator: a strict leader who doesn’t listen to his/her people’s wants and needs
  • democratic: following the principal where the government represents the people
  • weapons of mass destruction: an extremely dangerous weapon (ex. nuclear) that can cause death and damage in a major way

Final US Troops Leave Iraq

On December 18th, after weeks of , a final convoy of US soldiers rolled out of . The departure, which took place without ceremony, officially marked the end of a war that lasted nine years. Rough estimates suggest that about 105,000 people lost their lives in the Iraq War, which began on March 20, 2003. This includes about 100,000 Iraqis and about 4,500 American troops. The cost to the US was estimated at about $1 trillion. While US President Obama says Iraqis were freed from a dictator and given the opportunity for a democratic future, critics argue that weapons of mass destruction were never found, and thousands of Iraqi widows and children are now living .

Comprehension Questions

  1. What happened on December 18, 2011?
  2. How long did the war last?
  3. What was the human cost of the War in Iraq?

Discussion Question: The War in Iraq is sometimes referred to as The Occupation of Iraq. The American military called it Operation Iraqi Freedom. Which do you think is more appropriate, and why?

show Answers

Written and recorded by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.
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