Taking a strictly bipartisan view, there has to be an inexorable deadline for bringing the troops back home because the President can't be allowed to use arguments of "not cutting and running" and "staying the course" to leave American troops in Iraq indefinitely.
This could turn out to be years or even decades from now. I respect the argument of not leaving Iraq in a fragile state of anarchy and instability or leaving the country worse than we met it, but that's no excuse to leave the troops there forever. It's more than four years now, with not much to show for it, and no reconstruction to boast of even after billions of taxpayers' money has been spent.
A clear, fair and binding deadline needs to be given to both sides, giving a fair amount of time for the Administration to achieve what it wants to achieve in Iraq and sending a clear message out to the American people that its troops will be coming home.
With a clear deadline dangling in front of the Iraqis and this Administration, a new sense or "urgency to get things done" will be created, which will include training a strong and stable Iraq security force and institutions to serve the country and relieve the job from our troops, and create a strong and stable democratic government of the Iraqi people to rule Iraq.
The insurgents' major battle cry is removal of what they see as an invading force. A withdrawal deadline would remove this--plus, if they are represented in a stable democratic government, this removes the need to bomb and maim.
A fair and clear deadline would be between eighteen and twenty-four months from today. This is the best bipartisan way forward.
New York, NY
Jul 30 2007 - 1:11pm