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…and set up the bank shot in 2016 for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, apparently:
The Obama administration has decided to drop the number of U.S. troops in Iraq at the end of the year down to 3,000, marking a major downgrade in force strength, multiple sources familiar with the inner workings and decisions on U.S. troop movements in Iraq told Fox News.
This shift is seen by various people as a cost-saving measure and a political measure. The only administration official fighting for at least 10,000 forces to stay in Iraq at the end of the year was Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, sources said. But she has lost the battle.
No, I don’t actually think that this scenario is actually what’s unfolding: nobody in the administration’s brave enough to try it. But, speaking cynically, this would work as a long term strategy. Accept that the election’s lost, set up a disaster for the Republican President to inherit and take the blame for, and put the one brave truth-teller in position to come over in 2016 and save the day. It’s not optimal, but then it’s going to take a couple of years for the Democrats to fix everything that Obama’s done to their party. They might as well sabotage things for the GOP in the meantime.
You know: if it were true, I’d almost be impressed at this play… except that the only people that are more worried about this scenario than would be our generals in the field are the Kurds (and, for that matter, the rest of the Iraqis). Which makes sense; after all, they’re the ones who will be doing the bleeding.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: What’s probably actually happening is that they’re testing whether people will freak out over reducing troop strength, with said freaking out preferably happening over on the GOP side (and thus roiling our Presidential primary further). Passive-aggressive nonsense like that is something that this administration does have the nerve for.