This AP story moving Wednesday afternoon:
U.S. Lt. Gen. Frank G. Helmick said the American military is still focused on leaving in December and is urging Iraqi security forces to acknowledge their weaknesses and try to close those gaps as quickly as possible.
"How they deal with it, that's up to them," said Helmick, the second-highest ranking American general in Iraq. "I get this sense that people think we're begging to stay here. We're not begging to stay here. What we are really trying to do is provide the best possible training and leave the Iraqis the he (sic) best capability that we can leave them in by the end of the year."
He said, "We want to do the absolute best job that we can do, but America doesn't beg."
End of quote. Frankly (not Tommy) I'm at a loss for words. In addition to the possible 46,000 first-time job applicants who would appear at the end of the year, there are the NGO organizations and the DOD contractors that would have to figure out what to do with their employees after Iraq. This number would be huge; Then there are military suppliers who would have to work with a large decrease in demand. The price of gas is going to make hummers very expensive to own.
The article notes there are about 70 bases and closes with: "shutting down dozens of bases scattered across the country." Does that make 70?