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December 15, 2006

Bush Leaning Towards 15,000 To 30,000 Fresh Troops In Iraq

A "surge" of firepower. It's about time.

Had he done this before the elections, the Republicans might have kept power, and who knows, Baghdad might already be nearly stabilized.

The Bush administration is leaning toward temporarily sending as many as 20,000 additional U.S. troops to Iraq, even as the Democrats taking charge of Congress demand a drawdown of forces.

U.S. officials say the increase is needed to make a new push to stabilize Baghdad and to bolster efforts to train the Iraqi army. The emerging plan is facing opposition from Iraqi officials adamant that more U.S. forces aren't the answer. U.S. military commanders in Baghdad have drawn up plans for the country that don't require any new personnel. The debate over whether to send additional U.S. forces to Iraq is the most visible manifestation of the high-level tumult roiling the Bush administration as it works to find a way forward there ahead of a presidential address to the nation early next year.

Although White House officials stress that no final decisions have been made, several aides involved in the internal deliberations say President Bush and senior administration officials appear receptive to calls to temporarily send 15,000 to 30,000 new U.S. forces to Iraq to bolster the 140,000 troops there.

...

Pentagon officials said they would send additional U.S. forces to Iraq only if the personnel had a clear military mission. "We would not surge without a purpose," the Army's top general, Peter J. Schoomaker, told reporters yesterday. "And that purpose should be measurable."

...

Deploying more U.S. forces to Iraq would be deeply unpopular in the U.S., where polls show that an increasing majority believes the U.S. is losing in Iraq, disapproves of the administration's handling of the war and wants to see a fixed timetable for a military withdrawal.

A bit of fact-free agendizing from the liberal WSJ reporters. Where is the poll stating that more troops, on a temporary basis, would be unpopular?

Rewrite: Deploying more U.S. forces to Iraq would be deeply unpopular in U.S. newsrooms.

A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll this week found that declining public support for the war had brought Mr. Bush's overall approval ratings down to 34%, the lowest recorded to date in his presidency. The poll showed 35% of those surveyed favor a phased troop withdrawal "beginning immediately," up from 27% in July.

35% is a majority, you see.


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posted by Ace at 05:31 PM

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