As for Obama's stated plan to bring home the troops within 16 months, Austin said, "I'd have to see the entire plan. I'd have to understand the strategic objectives of the leadership, and based on those strategic objectives, come up with operational objectives. It's very difficult to comment on one way or the other, whether one plan would work or one plan wouldn't work. Right now, we are helping the Iraqis achieve sustainable security, and helping them to increase the capability of the Iraqi security forces, and we are making great progress along those lines."
Essentially, as Ed Morrissey intuitively points out, there is no way the military can withdraw so quickly if they want to take their equipment with them. So, this naturally begs the question, how in the world did Senator Obama come up with sixteen months. It certainly wasn't as a result of speaking with anyone involved with the mission. It couldn't have been since he hasn't been on the ground since early 2006.
Of course, since Barack Obama's timeline has no relation to any military reality on the ground, we are now back to the problems that Dick Morris pointed out.
When it comes to Iraq, Obama is most comfortable living in the past. He wants to endlessly replay the day when he castigated the war as unnecessary and cooked up by White House political types and ideologues. He’s far less comfortable talking about Iraq now, and downright antsy when it comes to discussing the future.
It’s a lot easier to oppose a policy than to figure out how to replace it.
But that also means voters have no problem envisioning disaster should we pull out our troops too soon - the possible slaughter of pro-American Iraqis, plus police and government officials; perhaps a takeover by Iran; a comeback by al Qaeda and other terrorist operatives.
The problem is the Obama's entire pull out plan forces a plethora of what if questions. His pullout timeline just created a bunch of new ones. How does he expect to pull the troops out in sixteen months if there is no way to bring their equipment with them? If there is no way to do it, how did he arrive at sixteen months in the first place? The what ifs will continue almost ad nauseum.
From the beginning, I have seen Obama' s Iraq policy as the war equivalent of a snake oil salesman. Obama is often fond of saying that he will be as careful getting out as we were getting in. Furthermore, he says that he will end this war. Of course, the only way to responsibly end a war is to WIN. Furthemore, you don't end wars. You either lose or win wars. If you end the war before you won, THEN YOU LOST.
Barack Obama has given sweet words to a public desperate to wash its hands of a war they are tired of, however his entire pitch is nothing more than a mirage that ignores the consequences of his actions. This latest news that our military won't be able to leave the battlefield in sixteen months unless their equipment is left behind is another example of Obama's snake oil Iraq rhetoric.