January 16, 2004

drawdown...

Here's an interesting article on the reduction in American forces in Iraq that is now starting:

....The 101st Airborne Division's approach to waging peace in this northern Iraqi city is frequently lauded as the ideal of what men and women trained for war can accomplish by setting their guns aside and targeting development and local ties.

But now it faces a crucial test: doing the same mission with half as many US troops.

In just a few weeks, 18,000 soldiers of the 101st in northern Iraq will start streaming home, part of a rotation of all 120,000 US forces in Iraq. Replacing the 101st will be a much smaller force: The Army's new Stryker Brigade, a force of 5,000 or so soldiers whose unit is built around the capabilities of the Army's latest high-tech combat vehicle, and [other] units that will bring the total to 9,000....

It's the obvious next step (and was planned months ago). The torrents of insincere criticism will continue, but this is surely bad news for those who claim we are "in over our heads," or "bogged down without a plan." Or for those who claim we don't have enough troops, or that we should beg for allied help, or that our grandchildren will have to work in factories to pay for it all...Cheer up, things may get worse.

Posted by John Weidner at January 16, 2004 7:22 PM
Weblog by John Weidner