Congressmen and Senators are debating a set of resolutions that will establish their displeasure with progress in Iraq. These resolutions are non-binding; notwithstanding their grumbling, Congress has confirmed General David Petraeus to command the multi-national forces in Iraq. Gen. Petraeus and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates have explicitly stated that passage of any such measure encourages the enemy by broadcasting American irresolution.
The proposed resolutions, especially those put forth and supported by a number of Republicans up for election in 2008, have drawn enormous ire from Republican party activists. Their criticism has focused primarily on the probable negative effects of such a resolution. However, should Gen. Petraeus’s approach succeed (as many resolution opponents hope), current public opinion will reverse and those who voted for “retreat lite” may find their credibility beyond repair.