Friday, April 01, 2005

Goalposts moving again 

They're doing it. They're actually doing it. It looks like the US is planning on declaring Victory in Iraq and leaving. The Financial Times reports "A top US general on Wednesday said the Pentagon could begin large withdrawals of troops from Iraq as long as the level of violence in the country remained low until national elections, scheduled for the end of the year . . . "[If] the elections go OK, violence stays down, then we ought to be able to make some recommendations for us to be able to bring our forces home," Lt Gen Smith said at the Pentagon."
I guess the 50 to 60 attacks a day reported by General Casey less than a week ago, is now an 'inoperative' figure.
And note how the goal posts are moving again. Though the article notes that Bush himself has said US forces will remain until Iraq can provide for its own security, the generals quoted in this article aren't saying that at all. Rather, the new measurement of success appears to be only whether attacks on American soldiers are declining.
And I'll bet the daily attacks will decline pretty quickly once the US commanders in Iraq find out about the goalpost move. They'll make sure their troops just stop going on patrols. As soon as those elections are over, then whoosh, they're outta there.
After all, as somebody-or-other once said, no one wants to be the last man to die for a mistake.

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