President Obama announced that he'll pull (very nearly) all 41,000 remaining U.S. troops in Iraq by the end of the year, fulfilling his earliest campaign promise and finally wrapping this whole debacle up. This is fine news.
Amazingly enough, this follows the timeline set between the two countries all the way back in a 2008 Status of Forces Agreement negotiated by President Bush and continued by President Obama. While the administration has always publicly stuck to the December 31, 2011 deadline for removing all troops, there was some worry that as it approached, military leaders would inevitably demand and get an extension — until, say, 2020. This time, not so much.
That's not to say that we won't have some of our "people" in Iraq for the rest of eternity. Some intelligence people, lots of contractors, perhaps "150 troops... to assist in arms sales," and whatever other basic personnel it takes to properly run a puppet state sitting atop the world's largest untapped oil reserves and sharing a long border with Iran. Also, Iraq will want to keep a few Americans behind, to prosecute them.
And so ends our cheap little "weekend war" that would be resolved with barely a shot fired and easily financed by oil revenues and something something terrorists WMDs something something. No need to rehash all of the details, just remember that it was a cakewalk.
[Photo via AP]