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When Will U.S. Troops Leave Iraq?:
The U.S. invaded Iraq three and half years ago, in March 2003, and there has been a lot of discussion on when U.S. troops might leave Iraq. Some people think the troops should leave relatively soon; others say we need to wait until the situation has stabilized and democracy has taken root; and others have other approaches.

  I wonder though: What is your best guess for when U.S. troops actually will leave? To be clear, I'm not asking when you think troops should leave, but rather when they will leave, whether rightly or wrongly. In particular, what year do you think that will be? Will U.S. troops leave in 2007? 2008? 2009? 2010? 2011? 2012? Some year after that?

  UPDATE: Feel free to focus on when most troops will leave, not all.
Angus:
I envision us being there as long as, say, we have had troops in Germany, Japan, or Korea. So pencil me in for a continued presence in 2066 and beyond.
10.18.2006 3:56pm
Antares79:
2011. Toward Hillary's bid for re-election when she needs a populist measure to distract from her disastrous first term.
10.18.2006 3:56pm
Luke G. (mail):
I agree with Angus that we'll have some presence there indefinitely. As for the bulk of troops pulling out, I'd say 2010.
10.18.2006 3:58pm
Anderson (mail) (www):
2010. They'll be there, with no real plans to leave, until January 2009, when Bush leaves office. It will take until 2010 to get them out.

(I assume you mean "mostly out" &are allowing for a few advisory-types to stay.)
10.18.2006 3:59pm
Gabriel Malor (mail):
2065. At least. We'll be there for as long as we've been in Germany and Japan.
10.18.2006 4:06pm
Brendan (mail):
50+ years with bases. Majority out of the evryday life of Iraqi's by 2010-2012 when the Iraqi army has relative military control of the provinces.
10.18.2006 4:06pm
A.S.:
What do you mean by "out"? 100%? If not, how many troops can be left in Iraq to still be considered "out"?
10.18.2006 4:07pm
StevenK:
It's impossible to say. I think a mroe interesting question is what percentage of the number of soldiers who died in Vietnam, Korea or World War II will die in Iraq.
10.18.2006 4:08pm
J. F. Thomas (mail):
Considering that Tony Blair will be out of office by the end of this year and that means the British will pull a Dunkirk on us by early next year (the Brits, not the French, were the ones who cut and run in 1940), that means our fuel supplies will be in jeopardy shortly thereafter. George Bush may foolishly continue his "stay the course rhetoric", but if he does, our soldiers will be walking back to Kuwait. And unlike the 6th Army, they don't even have horses to eat once their supplies are cut off.
10.18.2006 4:08pm
JRL:
Overwhelming majority in 2007, with bases in perpetuity. No wait, only 21 years after the last of our current soldiers to die.
10.18.2006 4:12pm
ras (mail):
The US will have a meaningful presence there indefinitely, likely meaning generations.

The despots in the region have not ordered up another 9-11 cuz they see US troops next door and they remember how Saddam (the baddest boy in the neighborhood at the time) fared. Helps keep 'em in line.

[Unless one thinks it's really those highly-effective patdowns of grannies in airports that do the trick!]
10.18.2006 4:24pm
Wombat:
Note: I am defining Iraq as the non-Kurd section of the country. Unless the neighbors get pissy with non-combat flyover rules, we'll have bases there for decades, even possibly into the 22nd century.

Assuming the Dems take both houses and don't turn the Senate into an "all impeachment, all the time" circus, my timeline would be:

2007
End of January: Announce fact finding committees to look into "Iraqi force effectiveness."

Middle of March: Formal announcement of Iraqi milestones needed for continued American support.

July 1st: First milestone failure. Statements of plans to "Restructure American troop prescence".

~August 1st: Formal announcements of restructuring. Basically, a pullback of troops to 3 areas, "Kurdistan", the Green Zone, and a few bases along the border with Iran. All other existing bases are given over to Iraqi gov't forces (though not the equipment, excepting communications). New milestones are announced.

~September 15: The above changes are completed. Troop levels fall below 100k in country, although many are still stationed in the region.

November 1st: Failure of 2nd milestones. Troops are now only stationed in Kurdistan and Green Zone. Maybe ~60k in country. Another set of milestones, basically saying US will only have forces in stable parts of the country.

2008
By February 1st: 3rd and final set of milestones fails. Troops only stationed in Kurd areas, let's say 25-30k. Their presence is more to stave off a war between Turkey and Kurd Iraq than to do anything in what's now effectively Iraq.

20XX? Troops leave even Kurd areas of Iraq, whether to avoid war with Turkey or because occasional strikes against anti-government forces in "real Iraq" invite too many reprisals against Kurds.

Hrm, pithy I am not...
10.18.2006 4:29pm
WHOI Jacket:
My guess will be around 2008 for majority of forces with a continued presence ala Germany and Korea.
10.18.2006 4:31pm
Daniel Chapman (mail):
JRL wins the "comment of the day" award.
10.18.2006 4:31pm
A.S.:
UPDATE: Feel free to focus on when most troops will leave, not all.


OK: 90% of the troops will be out by the end of 2009. Which is too bad.
10.18.2006 4:32pm
BobNSF (mail):
The U.S. will have troops in Kurdistan for decades. When will Kurdistan come into existence? 2007, 2008 maybe.
10.18.2006 4:34pm
Pantapon Rose (mail):
It also depends on what you mean by Iraq, since it seems likely the country will be split up between the factions that just can't seem to get along.

I'd guess the bulk of the troops will be out by 2010, maybe sooner in the Shiite areas that will likely fall under Iranian influence soon after the Brits leave next year.
10.18.2006 4:35pm
PDXLawyer (mail):
2011, one way or the other. I expect the '06 congressional elections will set the course. If the Dems win big, the result will be to force a "statesmanlike" "multilateral" "pragmatic" policy which will signal that we're leaving in a few years. Result, things get worse, Dems take White House in '08 (think Nixon '68) and wait a few years before running completely, to show that they really *are* tough, but that dummy George got them in an unwinnable war.

If the Repubs hold on, despite their recent porkfest, the course will be stayed. It's *possible* that the war really is unwinnable, and if so these next two years will show it (key signs will be Iraqi gov't unable to act effectively, coups, etc.). Again, the '08 Presidential election will be a referendum on the war - if we run, it will take about 3 years to do it "decently." If we stay, it'll be over.
10.18.2006 4:37pm
rarango (mail):
The majority, however defined, by 2010 (the process will start with a new admnistration, either R or D,in 2009--but it will take a year for the debate and actualy withdrawal; following that, a German/Korean presence indefinitely.
10.18.2006 4:38pm
Wombat:
To summarize, "most" out of Iraq by Feb/March of 08.
10.18.2006 4:38pm
Duffy Pratt (mail):
A week from Tuesday.

Didn't you get the memo?
10.18.2006 4:38pm
Anon.:
We occupied Japan for 7 years...and it seems (I could be wrong) that the general population was quite a bit more homogenous in their long-term goals.

The Marshall plan went on for 6 years, but Europe had the advantage of a "corporate knowledge" on how to organize &rebuild.

Any guesses short of 10 years in Iraq are silly.
10.18.2006 4:39pm
Matt22191 (mail):
I'm in for 2010 as well, for most of them. I'm guessing that whatever bases we keep there will be relatively small; local security and infrastructure for a much larger force should the need arise, not much more. I doubt we'd have had huge bases in Germany and Japan as long as we have if the troops were restricted to the base nearly full-time, owing to the fact that some Germans and Japanese were constantly trying to kill them. It's undesirable for a number of reasons, and not just political ones.
10.18.2006 4:39pm
Paul Allen:
I suspect we'll start pulling out in December of this year. Rove &Co. will understand that its important to take the issue of an Iraq withdrawal off the table well before the next Presidential election.

This will be staying the course. We've been meeting our targets for training the Iraqi Army, but realistically the growth in the army isn't keeping pace with the rate of terrorism (which is not to say the # of terrorists is increasing).

I expect this will work by US Troops withdrawing from the cities and populated areas. Initially they will be deployed in an effort to seal the border, but within a year expect that they've withdrawn to their regional bases--leaving at most a battalion of men in the region with the stated intent of interfering only if the situation becomes very severe (and under a UN mission) and with the promise of staying out if the pot stops boiling.

This will deflate support for the insurgency which relies heavily on anger generated by the troops presence.

In this way, we won't be giving up. We'll be staying the course but enacting a new strategy. The war itself will remain a noble endeavor.
10.18.2006 4:43pm
Kevin P. (mail):
StevenK:

It's impossible to say. I think a mroe interesting question is what percentage of the number of soldiers who died in Vietnam, Korea or World War II will die in Iraq.

Would we have to resurrect them first? :-)
10.18.2006 4:44pm
Bpbatista (mail):
60 years like in Germany and Japan?! Hell, we still have troops in the Confederacy -- I'll say 125 to 150 years.
10.18.2006 4:48pm
Daniel Chapman (mail):
Can I just predict that Paul Allen will be wrong?
10.18.2006 4:51pm
Jordan W. (mail):
The situation over in Iraq is far too complex to accuratly guess when the U.S. will pull out (if, as has been brought up, ever). But one of the things to look at is who is supporting the occupation: arms manufacturers, oil companies, and white collar businesses in general.

The bottom line is this: War is Good Business.

As long as there are powerful people garnering HUGE profits out of the occupation (or freedom movement or whatever you want to call it) the government will be "persuaded" to stay there.

So if you want a time frame for when the U.S. will pull out look to the economic trends. When the war stops benefiting certain people, the war will end.
10.18.2006 5:04pm
Greedy Clerk (mail):
Majority out of the evryday life of Iraqi's by 2010-2012 when the Iraqi army has relative military control of the provinces.

Clap, clap, keep clapping . . . Tinkerbell will appear if you just believe in her. . . .
10.18.2006 5:05pm
Greedy Clerk (mail):
My honest and serious answer is a that a real pulldown and withdrawal will occur by the end of 2009 if a Dem is elected; and by mid- to end of 2010 if a Republican is elected. This President will never leave -- he equates "winning" with staying. He has no idea what our objectives are; though, he's not alone as no one who still supports the war can tell me what it means to "win" it.
10.18.2006 5:09pm
Daniel Chapman (mail):
Do you mean no one gives an answer that you find satisfactory? Or perhaps that there has not been a clear "consensus" answer?

I find it hard to believe no one's told you, though. We win when Tinkerbell shows up. Keep clapping!
10.18.2006 5:20pm
Wombat:
Ooh, Jordan W. raises a good question, do Conspiracy Nutcases work with the same calendar we do? Or do they know the secret months that THEY (you know, the ones that are really in charge) don't want the public to know about, like Hallivember and Enrune?

And speaking of humor, are you people kidding with those 2011 dates? With all tbe handwringing that is going on, with well over a majority thinking we should leave now, after merely 3 and a half years, you think the public will allow it to go on for another FIVE years on top of that? It's practically written in stone that significant/majority troop withdrawals will be in progress, if not done, by the time of the '08 pres. debates, not that it will help whatever poor bastard gets the Repub. nomination (and I so wanted to see Pres. McCain too).
10.18.2006 5:20pm
CJColucci:
In the spirit of full disclosure, I am going to reveal a "prediction" that has already -- barring a real shocker -- been proven wrong. I had predicted that we would declare victory and get out shortly before the mid-term elections. Even I am not cynical enough to think it will happen between now and then.
10.18.2006 5:26pm
Anderson (mail) (www):
Result, things get worse

Yes, that's certainly what I expect under the Dems, as opposed to what's been happening.
10.18.2006 5:30pm
Jordan W. (mail):
Eh? I can't see how beleiving in the economic ramifications of war atomatically relegates me to the Conspiracy Nutcase list.

Regardless of whatever Haliburton or Enron do (and the most I've ever seen Enron do is cause brownouts in my house) there will always be profit out of war. WWII brought us out of the Depression (nevermind the Welfare program).

I think if people took their minds off of "Mega-corporations" and focused on the bottom line white collar businessmen/congressmen who funded both sides of the "war" in the first place we might find more substantial fruit.
10.18.2006 5:32pm
J. F. Thomas (mail):
I suspect we'll start pulling out in December of this year. Rove &Co. will understand that its important to take the issue of an Iraq withdrawal off the table well before the next Presidential election.

Haven't you been paying attention. There is nothing that will make this president budge from his current course. He will continue to say "stay the course" and things are fine and progressing until the Army and Marine Corps collapses. He has ignored every warning sign and call to change course. He isn't going to do anything different unless there is total collapse. He thinks he can stay the course until his successor can figure out how to fix up the complete disaster he has created.
10.18.2006 5:36pm
e:
Has there ever been a thread on when US troops will leave ROK? Quite a different situation, but our public seems happy to ignore military deployments most of the time...
10.18.2006 5:47pm
Jordan W. (mail):
Iraq seems to be the "hot" button pushing topic for most, but the U.S. has been in Afghanistan longer than in the Near(er) East. When will there be an outcry for them to come home?
10.18.2006 5:56pm
Angus:
With the updated clarification of the question, I'd say the majority of U.S. troops will be out in early 2009 if a Democratic president is elected, about 2011 if it is a Republican president.

Either way, my prediction is that there will be a U.S. force of 30,000-40,000 in Iraq for a few generations.
10.18.2006 6:04pm
J. F. Thomas (mail):
Has there ever been a thread on when US troops will leave ROK? Quite a different situation, but our public seems happy to ignore military deployments most of the time...

The difference between our troops in Japan, ROK and Germany is of course that since the fifties they have not been involved in maintaining the peace in those countries. In fact they are strictly prohibited by the status of forces agreements from doing so. In Germany, if an American soldier breaks the law, there are elaborate rules on who prosecutes him or her, the Germans or the Americans. Off base, the American forces have no jurisdiction and they have no right to arrest German citizens even on U.S. bases--at most they can ticket them and hold them for more serious offenses until German polezei arrive. Even German civilians who work for the U.S. in Germany work under German labor law, creating the odd situation that they have the right to strike (along with 5 weeks of vacation, unlimited sick leave, 17 holidays and a 36 hour work week) while U.S. civilian employees do not.
10.18.2006 6:10pm
Christopher Cooke (mail):
2010, but with substantial reductions within the next 2 years.

As for US bases in Iraq, Larry Diamond, former advisor to the CPA and member of the new James Baker Commission, has advocated the position that the US renounce any intentions to have a longterm base in Iraq. I think that position will prevail, as the neo-cons (who advocated having such basis) are now eclipsed by Condi Rice/James Baker, et al. Did anyone see the Frontline on PBS-- The Lost Year in Iraq-last night? Very interesting how Jay Garner, whom I took for dufus, is now, publicly at least, appearing quite savy while L. Paul "Jerry" Bremer, who struck me as quite smart, now appears less smart in his decisions (that, of course, is Woodward's spin on things too).

Anyway, I think, regardles of ones' politics, we will be out of Iraq within 4 years. The Baker solution, which will be announced in December, will be to hand over control to the Iraqis because our presence is making the Iraqi government dsyfunctional (e.g.., the Shiites don't have to negotiate with the Sunnis because we are there; without such negotiations, no peace is possible with them).
10.18.2006 6:49pm
Houston Lawyer:
I believe we may redeploy our forces from Iraq to Iran sometime during 2007.
10.18.2006 7:24pm
te:
When the supply of young hotties runs out:

10.18.2006 7:28pm
te:
Here's the link
10.18.2006 7:28pm
Igglephan:
J. F. Thomas -- nice Dunkirk reference above. Worth noting that "cut and run"saved the free damn world.

Pullout early 2007 -- the war is no longer an effective wedge issue for Republicans, and it's pretty clear our presence there is doing more harm than good from a security standpoint. Cheney may have planned for a 2050 date (witness the huge embassy) but things have a way of changing.
10.18.2006 7:45pm
Paul Allen:

I suspect we'll start pulling out in December of this year. Rove &Co. will understand that its important to take the issue of an Iraq withdrawal off the table well before the next Presidential election.

Haven't you been paying attention. There is nothing that will make this president budge from his current course. He will continue to say "stay the course" and things are fine and progressing until the Army and Marine Corps collapses. He has ignored every warning sign and call to change course. He isn't going to do anything different unless there is total collapse. He thinks he can stay the course until his successor can figure out how to fix up the complete disaster he has created.


Actually the scheme I discussed is one we're hashing out in the "James Baker Commission". Given that the goal is to release recommendations after the election, December is not too soon to see the first redeployment.

The amazing thing, I think, is how little press time has been spent on the commission, what's its doing, and it what it means for claims that Bush is too hard-headed.

Redeployment out of the populated areas is viable within the administration but depends on avoiding the impression that the plan is a "cut and run proposal".

The appeal is in the chance to avoid "losing" which is surely what will happen if we stay in the cities where we are forced to impair the liberity and dignity of ordinary Iraqi's for the sake of protecting our own troops.
10.18.2006 8:56pm
Brian Garst (www):
After the recent poll on Iraqi opinion which showed disapproval for both Al Qaeda and coalition forces, I predicted early 2007 as the beginning of the withdrawal. I still feel that is the case. As time goes on, the presense of troops is going to become, on balance, less positive and more negative. So at some point it's better to take them out and hope Iraqi forces are ready. From what I can gather, that point is in the near future, though obviously commanders in Iraq will have a much better feel for that than I do.
10.18.2006 9:09pm
therut:
When the Dems take over the house and pull the funding... I have seen this before. Then there will be a genocide and it will of coarse be our fault..... But this war will last for decades. There will be more awful terror attacks. And who knows about Iran and NK... We may finally see what it is like to be nuked... I predict a world wide war before my death with will occur naturally within 30 years. Your grandchildren and possible great grandchildren will be fighting what we were to stupid to stop. Will the US survive probably but it will not ever be the same. Maybe it will be better as we will learn again there is evil in the world and all cultures and beliefs are not relative and to be celebrated and admired.
10.18.2006 9:32pm
Cab:
Most will be out by the fall of 2008. There might be something else going on around then too, but I can't remember what it is.
10.18.2006 9:46pm
Christopher Cooke (mail):
Therut: "When the Dems take over the house and pull the funding... I have seen this before. Then there will be a genocide and it will of coarse be our fault."

Okay, to which war are you referring? Vietnam? Yes, I am sure that war turned out disastrously after the US pulled out. Vietnam now makes Nike shoes, certainly that is a genocidal atrocity that would have been avoided had we not "stayed the course." Or, perhaps you are referring to the killing fields in Cambodia. Of course, that analogy doesn't work, because our arch enemies, the Vietnamese communists, stopped the Khmer Rouge.
10.18.2006 11:07pm
Lev:
Ah yes, Vietnam after the US evacuation of Saigan in 1975 as the advancing North Vietnamese troops were showered with rose petals, was a peaceful, slightly left democracy, much like France.
10.19.2006 12:17am
Lev:
US troops will begin to be withdrawn in significant quantities in late 2007.

Within the next six months or so, the Iraqi government will finally take out the Shiite and Sunni death squads and militias, or it will not.

If it does, then Iraq can "take care of its internal security itself" and does not need US troops for it. If it does not, then Iraq will have demonstrated it has no will to take care of its internal security, and does not need US troops to do it.
10.19.2006 12:21am
Andrew J. Lazarus (mail):
Not as long as Soviet troops were in the Warsaw Pact countries of Eastern Europe, but about as popular when they leave.
10.19.2006 12:24am
Mahan Atma (mail):
"do Conspiracy Nutcases work with the same calendar we do?"

You'd have to ask Eisenhower about that, I guess.

Seriously though, you don't have to be a conspiracy nutcase to think the military-industrial complex has a HUGE influence on this kind of decision-making. We're talking hundreds of billions of dollars. That is a LOT of motivation.

But hey, if you want evidence, look no further than Randy "Duke" Cunningham. Remember him?
10.19.2006 12:52am
Abandon:
American forces will not withdraw by themselves anytime soon. They will want to keep bases with more than just several units in Iraq even in the event things cool down there (being so close to the syro-palestian channel and Iran is an opportunity one wouldn't want to waste).

I predict their withdrawal will only occur the day a nationalist Chiite government will have been democratically elected (despite the efforts from the CIA (and other foreign - mainly western - agencies) to have a strong West leaning leader in place) and will fulfill his promess to nationalize oil production and to clean the country from broad influence. With the exception, of course, of Iran. That day, democracy will be greeted as a liberator for the prominent majority in Iraq, so long for the minorities.

Then hell will break loose in the Middle-East, Cain and Abel (Sunnis and Chiites) fighting each other the privilege to wish death and pestilence to America and, by no mean to be forgotten in the uproar, Israel.

That's how I see it, but I may simply need my optimism fix.
10.19.2006 2:47am
Jeek:
the British will pull a Dunkirk on us by early next year (the Brits, not the French, were the ones who cut and run in 1940),

Let's see, the British contributed 10% of the ground force, and fought under French command, but they should be blamed for the loss of the battle. Say what?

There would have been no Dunkirk if the French hadn't cut and run on the Meuse. For the British not to have retreated to Dunkirk would simply have thrown away 330,000 of their best troops.
10.19.2006 9:23am
Tom952 (mail):
We give Iraq notice in 2007 or 2008 and substantially withdraw 12 months later.
10.19.2006 10:28am
Anderson (mail) (www):
the Brits, not the French, were the ones who cut and run in 1940

That is the most mistaken thing I hope to read all month.
10.19.2006 11:38am
Ed:
If we had gone in hard rather then trying to preserve as much of the poulation as possible, we could have probably withdrawn troops after 5 years, so 2008. By taking greater care not to do civilian damage, the people felt less defeated then say Japan WW2, and will likely take 10 years so 2013 for success.
10.19.2006 11:45am
Nobody (mail):
Since the president defines winning in Iraq is "not leaving," I can say, with confidence, not a moment before noon on 1/20/09.
10.19.2006 11:52am
Roy Stogner (mail):
"It is unknowable how long that conflict will last. It could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months."

No, but seriously: my guess is a gradual withdrawal starting and ending in the first three quarters of 2008. Bush won't want to leave a mess of Iraq and look bad in the history books, but his advisors will convince him that if he doesn't withdraw US troops carefully the next President will be a Democrat who would "cut and run" suddenly.
10.19.2006 12:03pm
Josh Jasper:
President Barak Obama's team, headed by Secretary Of State Bill Clinton, and Secretary Of Defense Shinseki will raise troop levels for about 3 years after the 2008 elections of decreasing violence, and then withdraw in 2011, leaving a much more stable Iraq.

On second thought, no one is that smart in politics.
10.19.2006 12:03pm
Roy Stogner (mail):
By taking greater care not to do civilian damage, the people felt less defeated then say Japan WW2, and will likely take 10 years so 2013 for success.

Wait, I'm confused - I was told we were in Iraq to liberate the Iraqis, not to defeat them. We had to defeat the people in order to save them, huh?

If only there was some sort of strongman leader who didn't care about civilian damage and who made the Iraqi population feel defeated. Then we could have just left that guy in charge.
10.19.2006 12:07pm
Jon Black (mail):
The U.S. will have about 50K troops on isolated bases within Iraq in "perpetuity."

With respect to the remainder of the force, they will stick long enough for the Dems to make withdrawing the troops the centerpiece of their 2008 campaign. Then the Repubs will pull the rug out from under them in the summer of 2008, when they announce a "comprehensive re-deployment."

American politics, aren't they fabulous.
10.19.2006 12:24pm
rosignol (mail):
Then the Repubs will pull the rug out from under them in the summer of 2008, when they announce a "comprehensive re-deployment."


Yeah, but will they be re-deploying stateside, or eastward?

Be careful what you wish for.
10.19.2006 1:07pm
te:

Yeah, but will they be re-deploying stateside, or eastward?

Other than as a neo-con masturbation fantasy, there is no way in the world that we are going into Iraq.
10.19.2006 1:26pm
Joe7 (mail):
For reference;

The Allied occupation of Germany officially lasted from 1945 to 1956. (The Federal Republic of Germany, or West Germany, was established in 1949.)

The Allied occupation of Japan officially lasted from 1945 to 1952.
10.19.2006 2:59pm
Anderson (mail) (www):
Other than as a neo-con masturbation fantasy, there is no way in the world that we are going into Iraq.

Hey, I think you used a comment from 2002 by mistake. Need to update that to "Iran."
10.19.2006 3:53pm
te:
Anderson

Iraq, Iran, Sunni, Shiite - I sure can't tell them apart. :)
10.19.2006 4:05pm
Anderson (mail) (www):
Iraq, Iran, Sunni, Shiite - I sure can't tell them apart. :)

Welcome to the Volokh blog, Mr. President!
10.19.2006 4:16pm
te:
Anderson

Thank you - but I do want you to know that I am looking into what's up with Northern Korea.

It must the climate or something becuase my understanding is that Koreans from the Southern part of Korea are really friendly people.
10.19.2006 4:21pm
Lev:

President Barak Obama's team, headed by Secretary Of State Bill Clinton, and Secretary Of Defense Shinseki will raise troop levels for about 3 years after the 2008 elections of decreasing violence, and then withdraw in 2011, leaving a much more stable Iraq.


Yes, just like Vietnam was more stable after the Nixon multiyear withdrawal strategy.
10.20.2006 1:55am
Jam (mail):
1) Huge permanent bases and embassy being built.
2) Possible "soft" partition.
3) The Eisenhower Strike Group in the Gulf.
4) Iraq.
5) Turkey.
6) POTUS (any of them) highest claim to greatness is when in war time.

Not leaving anytime soon, especially, if there is an "incident" with the Eisenhower. At elast these uS are not leaving voluntarily.
10.23.2006 2:15pm