The Washington debate over the pullout from Iraq splits into two camps. One says stay until the mission is accomplished. The other argues for a pullout as fast as possible. There is a third alternative, a termination strategy that should have been written and delivered with the initial plan to invade Iraq. We started this war to remove the murderous Saddam Hussein and eliminate the threat of WMD-mission accomplished.
This strategy would drastically reduce U.S. casualties. Learning a lesson from our rapid departure from Vietnam, this time we would not abandon the "purple thumb people"-the ink-stained Iraqi people, police, and military who risked death by voting to obtain freedom.
Most arguments for our withdrawal are driven by a desire to end the daily roll call of American casualties in that wartorn country. There are no similar calls to bring troops home from places such as Germany, South Korea, or Okinawa. The strategy I propose would result in dramatic downturns in the number of U.S. casualties, potentially to no casualties.