Blair to Announce Iraq Withdrawal Plan


Feb 20, 2007
Blair to Announce Iraq Withdrawal Plan

British PM Tony Blair to soon announce the withdrawal of some British troops from Iraq

LONDON, Feb. 20, 2007
By THOMAS WAGNER Associated Press Writer

(AP) Prime Minister Tony Blair will announce on Wednesday a new timetable for the withdrawal of British troops from Iraq, with 1,500 to return home in several weeks, the BBC reported.

Blair will also tell the House of Commons during his regular weekly appearance that a total of about 3,000 British soldiers will have left southern Iraq by the end of 2007, if the security there is sufficient, the British Broadcasting Corp. said, quoting government officials who weren't further identified.

The announcement comes even as President Bush implements an increase of 21,000 more troops for Iraq.

But Blair said Sunday that Washington had not put pressure on London to maintain its troop numbers. The BBC said Blair was not expected to say when the rest of Britain's forces would leave Iraq. Britain currently has about 7,100 soldiers there.

Read full story here.

Senate Democrats to Introduce Re-authorization Resolution

Hi guys,

Wrote this article for you:

"After facing mounting pressure from the American people for action in Iraq, reports from the Associated Press indicate that newly elected Democratic Senate are preparing to pass a binding resolution restricting the role and scope of the American forces in Iraq.

Whether or not this action was prompted by the British announcement of a significant troop drawdown from 7,000 to 5400 in Basra is unclear. However, these overtures come at a time when President Bush's handling of the Iraq war has been straddling the 20s in the approval ratings.

The resolution, which has been sponsored by Senator Joseph Biden amd Carl Levin, in effect seeks to override the Use of Force Act of 2002. This is the very same resolution that gave authorization to the war in Afghanistan an Iraq. This unprecedented resolution as proposed by the DEMs, according to some legal and political analysts, would directly challenge the authority of the President. But in light of mounting pressure from the left of the Democratic party as well as the loud anti-war movement, the Congress seems to have little choice.

But it is yet to be seen if this measure will be backed by bi-partisan support. This seems unlikely as more mildly worded resolutions introduced by Senate majority leader Harry Reid was filibustered by the Republican minority firewall led by Sen. Mitch McConnell. In aprevious encarnation of a Senate vote two weeks ago, GoP insisted that Reid's non-binding resolution must be accompanied by two GoP resolutions, one of which was a vote for funding American troops. Seeking to avoid a vote on funds, the Democrats resolution failed to reach the floww of the Senate.

Many political analysts speculate that a deadlock in the Senate seems enevitable. Adding further to the dilemma is the President's veto power which can be called into play. In the last session on the Senate Foreign Relations committe, the constitutionality of the President's veto power as it relates to the scope of war was called into question by Delaware Sen Joe Biden. Feedback is yet to be provided by the justice department.

In the next coming days it wil become clear what will be the true impact of the alleged Democrat authorization resolution both on the American people and the White House."
I have more respect for the Democrats who stand up and say "cut the funding for this war" then those who try to do it through back door means. The Constitution gives Congress the authority to end the war through the power of the purse -- if they want to end the war, then do it Constitutionally.

The least they can do is quit playing politics and cut funding for the war.
In any case, I think a withdrawl of any kind at this point is the wrong and dangerous move long-term for obvious reasons.
I have a problem with cutting the funding for the troops if it puts them in harm's way. However, in light of the arrogance of our current Commander-In-Chief, that seems to be inevitable anyways.

It is one thing to have convictions to stay a course that one believes in; but it is another to snub one's nose at another branch of government and say, "you can't stop me!" We are playing with soldiers' lives here, and turning it into a pissing contest.

I voted for Bush in 2000 because he seem humble, and I liked his "compassionate conservatism." Well, the Bush of 2007 is not the Bush of 2000. In 2000, I could not have envisioned Bush to tell Congress that he is the "decider" and "decision-maker." We elected a President; not a King.

If Bush/Cheney continue on this course; I think the only consequence will be that Congress must cut off the purse.

Enough is enough, Mr. President. It is time to start pulling on that long leash you have extended for yourself.

I find it odd that they are announcing downsizing the number of British troops yet they are getting ready to send Prince Harry over there with his unit. They've not mentioned whether his unit is replacing any other unit, just that they will be leaving for Iraq very soon. Is this smoke and mirrors? Increase the level and then tout pulling troops out? Is this a way of appeasing the British public? They have also stated that there is a good chance that Prince William will eventually find his way to Iraq.

It will be interesting to see if the violence increases around Basrah once the redeployment takes place.