The British are Leaving, the British are Leaving!



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Wednesday, February 21, 2007 - 12:30pm

The British are Leaving, the British are Leaving!

It looks like Tony Blair is no longer willing to be George Bush's lapdog any longer.  In a startling announcement, Blair declared that he is withdrawing 1,600 British troops from Iraq in the next few months.  The British only have 7,100 troops in the country to begin with, but this move will reduce them to 5,500.  Blair hopes to draw down another 500 in the summer and remove all of them in 2008.


This is a sharp blow to the Bush administration and their futile goal of stabilizing Iraq.  While President Bush is increasing troop levels, other coalition countries are reducing them.  The U.K. had over 40,000 troops in Iraq at the start of the war, but have gradually withdrawn their soldiers over the last few years.  Despite the decrease, the British would still have the second most troops in Iraq. 


Unfortunately, this has become an American war.  Prime Minister Blair has discovered what everyone else in the world (except W) has figured out; that the war in Iraq is not winnable with the current strategy.  The only way to win this war is with at least 400,000 coalition soldiers, and that has become impossible.  With everyone bailing, the U.S. cannot come up to that level. 


The United States now accounts for 90% of the troops in Iraq.  They do not have the resources to put enough soldiers in the country to make a significant difference.  The current political fight is about a 21,500 troop surge, but that is a drop in the bucket against what is necessary.


With the British leaving, it is time for the Americans to consider leaving as well.  The Iraqis need to take care of their own country.  Perhaps the United States could focus on their own country as well.


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