Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Real Deal For Iraq

The real deal for Iraq should be somewhere in the middle of the moderate Democrats plans and the moderate Republicans plans.

In the current bill, the troop pullout is attached to funding. They should be separate bills. Congress has the ability to stop a war, and it doesn't have to be through funding. It's happened before: Vietnam.

Reading the previous paragraph, one could correctly guess that the Real Deal involves the pullout of American troops from Iraq. Troops shouldn't and can't be pulled out immediately; That's just not smart. But, as even the President has said, our commitment should not be open ended. The plan would include a major force reduction by the middle and end of 2009. Not a complete withdrawal; a force of at least 10,000 would need to remain stationed there, if not more.

So you're beginning to think this sounds exactly like the troop plan that's already a bill. Here's where it's different: Congress (with the president's approval, of course) can decide to extend the time until the pull out or begin the pull out earlier based on certain conditions. These conditions would be based on casualty rates, causes of casualties, amount of Iraqi civilian deaths, and whatever else Congress deems necessary. The more success, the earlier troops would be pulled out. This is the opposite of the Pelosi Plan. But not only this, if the war begins to go extremely badly, the troops would be pulled out earlier. The definition of extremely would be dictated by the number of U.S. casualties. And if Iraqi civilian deaths increased, while American deaths remained the same or lowered, Congress would have the option of extending the pullout date.
Or something like that. This was basically a rough draft, an idea that's been swishing around. The plan's not complete yet.

Maybe not even like that at all. Being sick doesn't allow you write very good posts ;).

UPDATE: This Boston Globe editorial says it much more clearly.