2004-05-18

Amerikaner w�lzen R�ckzugsstrategien

--- Der Unmut �ber Bushs Krieg im Irak w�chst, nun werden in Washington laut BusinessWeek h�nderingend Strategien gesucht, ohne allzu gro�en Gesichtsverlust wieder aus dem "Abenteuer" herauszukommen: With Saddam Hussein in jail and Iraq's potential as a haven for weapons of mass destruction neutralized, both parties willingly backed an open-ended troop commitment to install a stable, democratic government in Baghdad and, in Bush Administration dreams, throughout the Islamic world. Now that consensus is cracking. While White House and Pentagon officials show no sign of wavering, lawmakers and foreign policy experts are starting to debate whether the Bush team's poorly managed war effort can achieve its goals -- or whether those hopes would be out of reach for even a savvier operation. "We have to either mobilize or get out," Representative John Murtha (Pa.) -- one of the most hawkish Democrats on the Hill -- told a May 6 news conference. "I don't know that we have the will to mobilize." No one in Washington expects to bring all the troops home by Christmas. But in the vision that's starting to emerge, Christmas, 2005, could signal the start of a major drawdown. By that point, Iraq is supposed to have an elected government, a new constitution, and a trained military and police force in place. The U.N. would presumably be playing a much larger role in helping to develop new governing institutions. And if Iraqi resentment of the U.S. presence hasn't quieted by then, Washington would face a strong temptation to declare victory and get out.