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Iraq Study Group: Quagmire


I don’t know what to make of this:

The report recommends that Mr. Bush make it clear that he intends to start the withdrawal relatively soon, and people familiar with the debateover the final language said the implicit message was that the process should begin sometime next year.

The report leaves unstated whether the 15 combat brigades that are the bulk of American fighting forces in Iraq would be brought home, or simply pulled back to bases in Iraq or in neighboring countries. (A brigade typically consists of 3,000 to 5,000 troops.) From those bases, they would still be responsible for protecting a substantial number of American troops who would remain in Iraq, including 70,000 or more American trainers, logistics experts and members of a rapid reaction force.

Same story:

Even as word of the study group’s conclusions began to leak out, Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said two or three battalions of American troops were being sent to Baghdad from elsewhere in Iraq to assist in shoring up security there. Another Pentagon official said the additional troops for Baghdad would be drawn from a brigade in Mosul equipped with fast-moving, armored Stryker vehicles.

Quite honestly these people, our political class, have fatigued me to the point that I don’t know what to think. The country just elected a bunch of Marxists who actively hate the ideas America was founded on and so it’s hard for me to care what James Baker and Vernon Jordon (yes of Lewinski fame) think about Iraq. I’m quickly taking the view of “bomb these people into 2006 or leave.”

More from Rich Lowry:

This Baker-Hamilton recommendation, if the New York Times report is accurate, is a disaster. It represents, as Cliff noted earlier, the establishment quitting on the war.

To say our political class is underwhelming is a gross understatement.

-- The Ace