My post below, re the surge, has set off squeals of outrage over at Contentions, the Commentary magazine blog. This is to be expected, but still sad when one of the squealers is Max Boot, whose work I admire. But Boot, a McCain advisor, goes so far as to reinforce his candidate's call for 100 years of neocolonial military presence in Iraq:
In order to build on the success that General Petraeus and his soldiers have had, we need to maintain a long-term commitment in Iraq-for 100 years if need be, as John McCain has said. That doesn't mean 100 years of fighting; clearly, that would be unsustainable. It does mean a long-term troop presence designed to reassure Iraqis of our commitment to their security against an array of enemies. Having come this far against such heavy odds, it would be the height of folly to throw away our recent success by a precipitous withdrawal. I hope Barack Obama realizes that even if so many of his supporters don't.
So anything less than 100 years is precipitous? As I've written here before--to the dismay of many commenters--my guess is, whomever is elected President, we will see a gradual drawdown that brings us to 30,000 troops in 2012, and much lower thereafter, and without long-term bases,which is what Ryan Crocker and many others familiar with Iraq's domestic politics consider realistic. I suspect that just as Obama has...adjusted his position on NAFTA, he considers his foolish 16-month withdrawal scheme as his former advisor Samantha Power did, as a "best case" scenario.
Then, what can one say about Jennifer Rubin, who accuses me of antisemitism?
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