Hawks Say What We've Been Saying All Along
They are not quick studies. We anti-war types have been arguing from day one that an American invasion of Iraq would be a disaster and would serve as the best recruitment campaign the Muslim fundies had ever seen:
A growing number of national security specialists who supported the toppling of Saddam Hussein are moving to a position unthinkable even a few months ago: that the large US military presence is impeding stability as much as contributing to it and that the United States should begin major reductions in troops beginning early next year.
Their assessments, expressed in reports, think tank meetings, and interviews, run counter to the Bush administration's insistence that the troops will remain indefinitely to establish security. But some contend that the growing support for an earlier pullout could alter the administration's thinking.
Those arguing for immediate troop reductions include key Pentagon advisers, prominent neoconservatives, and some of the fiercest supporters of the Iraq invasion among Washington's policy elite.
The core of their arguments is that even as the US-led coalition goes on the offensive against the insurgency, the United States, by its very presence, is stimulating the resistance.
"Our large, direct presence has fueled the Iraqi insurgency as much as it has suppressed it," said Michael Vickers, a conservative-leaning Pentagon consultant and longtime senior CIA official who supported the war.
These people are specialists, for God's sake?