In a move that will surprise no one, General Petraeus will advocate giving the surge more time:
The top American commander in Iraq, Gen. David H. Petraeus, has recommended that decisions on the contentious issue of reducing the main body of the American troops in Iraq be put off for six months, American officials said Sunday.
General Petraeus, whose long-awaited testimony before Congress will begin Monday, has informed President Bush that troop cuts may begin in mid-December, with the withdrawal of one of the 20 American combat brigades in Iraq, about 4,000 troops. By August, the American force in Iraq would be down to 15 combat brigades, the force level before Mr. Bush’s troop reinforcement plan.
The precise timing of such reductions, which would leave about 130,000 troops in Iraq, could vary, depending on conditions in the country. But the general has also said that it is too soon to present recommendations on reducing American forces below that level because the situation in Iraq is in flux. He has suggested that he wait until March to outline proposals on that question.
At which point, there is no decision to be made, because troop strength levels will dictate our actions.
One last thing- I am officially sick and tired of reading and hearing about people calling Petraeus Gen. “Betray us.” This is substantively no different from the disgusting stab in the back bullshit we get from the Hewitts and the Weekly Standard assholes, and I am sick of it.
While Petraeus and the military have certainly opened themselves up to scrutiny by handing out exclusives to folks like Fox news, and having PR shops set up to “sell the surge,” or telling us he “can accept” purely political troop withdrawals (something he should not be doing- his job is to state whether we need the damned troops there or not), calling Petraeus a traitor or using rhetoric that implies treason is outrageous. I don’t think he is lying, I don’t think he will lie to the committee- I think that he is trying to win, and is more likely to focus on the positive aspects of the surge than the negative. That may bring his judgement into question in my book, but it does not make him a traitor.
I understand many of you are frustrated with this war, frustrated with this administration, and frustrated with the spineless Democrats. Taking it out on Petraeus and acting like the scum at the Free Republic who never miss a chance to call someone a traitor isn’t going to fix anything.
*** Update ***
This video, via Sullivan, is instructive. Their judgement- the Petraeus report is little more than a political document.