Military.com/AP: Kerry Calls for Troop Withdrawal

On first glance from the headline it sounds good, but then you read the whole story . . .

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kerry says President Bush should bring home 20,000 troops from Iraq over the Christmas holidays if the December parliamentary elections there are successful.

Defeated by Bush last year and a potential candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008, Kerry called for a “reasonable time frame” for pulling back troops rather than a full-scale withdrawal advocated by some Democrats. He said it could be completed in 12 to 15 months.

. . . The Republican National Committee argued that Kerry’s plan to pull back troops would make American forces remaining in Iraq more vulnerable to insurgent strikes.

Kerry’s plan is to go from 159,000 troops on the ground to 139,000, and then to slowly pull out over the next 1 year or more. This is absolute lunacy. To begin with this war is already lost. There is no way to pull this around and to delay the inevitable pullout means to have hundreds, even thousands of more casulaties for no reason.

Beyond that though, pulling out gradually is a bad move because it puts American troops at risk. I do strongly believe that we need to pull out ASAP, but until that happens those units should not be undermanned. (one point I agree with the GOP on) Maybe a gradual pullout would work IF the US consolidates its positions (in other words, use more of a defensive battle strategy and consolidate its forces into fewer strongholds), but not if it is spread out all over the country.

All in all, I much prefer the Green Party’s stance on this…

GP.org: Greens Mark 2,000 Troop Deaths in Iraq, Demand End to Occupation

. . . In calling for a White House order to begin the withdrawal of U.S. troops immediately, the Green Party has rejected the position of Democrats who ask for a plan to withdraw troops by the end of 2006.

“Every day the occupation is prolonged, more American troops and Iraqi civilians will be killed and maimed, we’re no closer to stability in Iraq, and are possibly nearer to a civil war there,” said Jody Grage Haug, Green Party co-chair and GPAX member. “The thousands of dead soldiers and civilians, nonexistent WMDs, forged evidence of an Iraqi nuclear threat (highlighted by the Plame scandal), torture in Abu Ghraib, and realization that a radical political ideology has motivated a massive abuse of power have resulted in majority opposition to the war, according to recent polls.”

“On this sad day, we also remember the servicemembers who are still risking their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, and we remember the families who have lost loved ones and who fear news of a lost loved one. And we thank people like Cindy Sheehan and all the veterans, families of fallen soldiers, and organizations supporting them for calling America back to sanity,” added Marc Sanson, party co-chair.