I'm sure you've heard by now that the tour of duty for Army soldiers has been extended to 15 months (from 12 months) in order to fuel the escalation. I found this part
to be most interesting:
Gates made sure to emphasize that although the new policy doesn't meen the troop buildup will be extended, it will allow the Pentagon the possibility to maintain current troop levels in Iraq for another year.
Another case of the Pentagon enabling Bush, or simply following Bush's orders. By taking this particular route, the military has made allowances for two full Friedman Units, reassuring the Preznit that he has the "flexibility" to do what he perceives is needed.
The Pentagon and military observers have been pointing out for some time that the military is at the "breaking point", yet it never seems to break. Rather the entire military structure is slowly crumbling to bits, much like the way the military was damaged during Vietnam. Like with everything Bush, it will take some time to rebuild (and frankly, I'm not sure if that's a bad thing?). Interestingly, I heard my first news report last night on ABC News of a wife complaining bitterly about her husband having been severely injured after being a stop-loss victim of the escalation. The husband was uninjured in his initial tour, but not so lucky later.
Trust me. At the end of the year Bush and the Pentagon will find a way to continue escalating, that is unless a significant number of Republicans turn against the President and the war. Ball's in their court .... let's see what they do with it.