Who really knows at this point? A recent article suggests that we may stay longer than we planned. Several military commanders want to maintain the current troop levels (117,000--down from 140,000 a year ago) for up to 2 months after the Iraqi elections, scheduled for January 16. But due to political tensions over voter registrations in the Kirkuk province, the elections may be delayed.
Despite recent suicide bombings, however, our troops have not been called back to the cities to quell violence, and the Iraqi government has not even hinted any misgivings about America's withdrawal plan. And violence levels are still lower than they were in 2005 and much lower than in the first half of 2007. It looks like they can stand on their own two feet now, no thanks to Bush's blunders. Even if they couldn't after all these years, that would be their problem, not ours.
Regardless of what happens in Iraq, we still need to get the hell out of there ASAP. On the whole, the American occupation has done more harm than good for the Iraqi people since we invaded in 2003. However, we've miraculously managed to rectify at least some of the tragic mistakes we made over there. Let's not make any further mistakes by staying any longer than planned.
All this while we are debating how many troops to send to Afghanistan. Hey, how about we wind that war down and get out of there as well.
Being the world's police has gotten us nothing but endless world strife and a $12 trillion national debt. Enough already!
We at the TSAP propose that our government ends these twin boondoggles completely, in no more than a year's time. The sooner, the better. Then maybe we could acutally rebuild America for the 21st century rather than let it wither on the vine.