Posted by: Dark Defender | November 7, 2008

Military pushes back on Obama time table?

From an article in time:

Senior U.S. military officials will likely advise Barack Obama to adjust his campaign pledge to withdraw all U.S. combat troops from Iraqby mid-2010. While promising a 16-month timetable for getting all U.S. fighting forces out, Obama repeatedly insisted on what he calls a “responsible” withdrawal. Pulling nearly all U.S. troops and equipment out of Iraq in 16 months is “physically impossible,” says a top officer involved in briefing the President-elect on U.S. operations in Iraq. That schedule would create a bottleneck of equipment and troops in the south of Iraq and Kuwait where brigades repair, clean and load vehicles and weapons for the trip home, said the official. Others say the U.S. could conceivably pull out on that time scale, although that would require leaving more equipment behind. A more important concern for officers is that the security gains in Iraq would be put at risk if troops were withdrawn before the Iraqi security forces are in a position to protect their own communities and borders.

Interesting, it looks to me like the military is going to push hard for a slow careful withdrawal.  I think that’s a good move and I suspect, if he plans to get reelected Obama will accept this. 

It could however complicate Afghanistan, if we are keeping a large number of troops in Iraq and spending money there those resources aren’t available for Afghanistan (obviously).  I am of the opinion that Iraq is more important than Afghanistan so I’m cool with that, but on the campaign trail Obama indicated he believes the opposite.  It will be interesting to see how he ends up dealing with these reality vs his promises conflicts.


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