Call me a cynic, but I think there is a strong connection here. The play's the thing. Truth does not matter. It's just what kind of a story you can sell to the world.
First, the U.S. military supposedly "withdraws" from Iraq's cities yesterday, with much hoopla and pomp and circumstance. The puppet regime in Iraq even declare today a holiday. See? We left, we were not interfering. The Yahoo frontpage today said something to the effect that U.S. Military Completes Withdrawal from Iraq. They didn't even mention that it was just the cities.
Then today, Iraq's oil and gas is put up for public auction. Most of the oil companies are holding out for better terms, meaning they want all the profits, and undoubtedly are working together to bust down the Iraqi government to take what they offer. Or, then again, the whole thing may be staged for public consumption. "Well, we did the best we could," the Iraqi government will say later when they take a deal that gives the people nothing for their own resources, and gives the western oil corporations everything.
Is it possible that the U.S. "pulled out" of the cities to create the appearance that they were not in control at the time of the auction? You bet.
Besides, if we can leave the cities, why don't we leave the country? That's right. Because our military is waiting there to guard the oil fields for the corporations when they come in.
Remember in March of 2001 when Cheney had secret meetings with the oil corporations, and requested maps of Iraq be delivered to him to use in those meetings? He refused to disclose what was discussed in those meetings, and the right-wing Supreme Court backed him up. Some people speculated that Bush and Cheney somehow knew about the planned 9/11 attacks and were preparing for war against Iraq from the time Bush stole the election. Or maybe they would have started a war even without 9/11. I'm wondering if the Iraq military invasion program included directives to our military about which oil fields they should guard as soon as they got there? That is why we're there, after all. It's all about the oil.