Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Who's in control of Iraq? Gen. Petraeus or Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr? You'll know by April Fools day

The U.S. Military has decided to reduce the number of troops from the "surge" in Iraq, according to news reports. It is expected that 30,000 troops will come home by July of 2008 and leave a remaining force of about 145,000, which does not include contractors. What does this all mean? Will the gains claimed to be the result of the "surge" be won and not prove fleeting? Did the surge really result in the gains or was it the fact that Shia Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr asked his Militia to stand down on Sept. 1st. We will find out the answers to these questions as the time the militia stood down is going to come to an end, coinciding with Troop withdrawal during the next 6 months. By April 1st (April Fools Day), if Shia Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr continues to keep his Militia off the streets, there will continue to be less violence. If he chooses to stir up the ethnic battles with Sunni's, the violence will emerge quickly in April, which will be at least 3 months before the 30,000 troops are totally home.

Watch casualty numbers for the next 5 months, especially Aprils to reflect what choice has been made. Interestingly, it will coincide with the rhetoric leading up to the U.S. Presidential debates between both the Democratic nominee and the Republican nominee for President.

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