US Defense Secretary Robert Gates has recommended the top military commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, be appointed head of US Central Command.
CentCom covers an area from the Horn of Africa into central Asia and includes all operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Gen Petraeus’s appointment is subject to the approval of the US Senate. He would replace Navy Adm William Fallon, who stepped down in March after a reported split with President George W Bush over his policy on Iran. An article by Esquire magazine, titled The Man Between War and Peace, said he was opposed to the use of force against the Islamic Republic over its nuclear activities.
After saying that everything is normal as usual in Iraq, now he’s going to get the central command?
Democratic opponents of US President George W Bush have accused him of putting off tough decisions on Iraq until after the presidential elections.
The criticism follows Mr. Bush’s announcement of a “major strategic shift” that includes suspending troop withdrawals after July. He says this would allow senior commander General David Petraeus to assess the next step in Iraq.
But his opponents say the people want answers from this president, now. The decision to halt withdrawals means the US presence in Iraq is likely to last well beyond January 2009, when Mr. Bush will leave office and whoever wins the November elections will take over.
Well they are right, aren’t they? He cannot take a decision the next president will be forced to honor against her/his policy!
President George W Bush says he will put a freeze on the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, as requested by his top general in the country.
The president told the Weekly Standard magazine that the “drawdown” would continue until July as planned.
But after that, he said, Gen Petraeus “wants to wait and see. And I strongly support that. And therefore I won’t commit beyond July.”
No worries George, till December plenty of time to think about it, after December the decision is not …yours!
The top U.S. military commander in Iraq said Wednesday that he is unlikely to call for another troop buildup in Iraq, even if security deteriorates after the extra American soldiers return home this summer.
Gen. David Petraeus told a House panel that such a move would be considered the last resort, in part because of the strain it would place on the Army. First, the military could try to reallocate existing troops to respond to any hotspots. It also would rely more on Iraqi forces, which are improving in capability, he said.
“That would be a pretty remote thought in my mind,” he said of reinstating last year’s influx of troops. Petraeus has recommended to President Bush that the U.S. complete, by the end of July, the withdrawal of the 20,000 troops that were sent to Iraq last year to calm the violence there. Beyond that, the general proposed a 45-day evaluation period, to be followed by an indefinite period of assessment before he would recommend any further pullouts.
If the general says so imagine how things …really are! But there is a catch here as well, fine no more troops but what about the number of troops already there?