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The call by Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki for a timetable for the removal of American troops from Iraq presents an enormous opportunity. We should seize this moment to begin the phased redeployment of combat troops that I have long advocated, and that is needed for long-term success in Iraq and the security interests of the United States.

Barack Obama has an op-ed in the NYT about his plan for Iraq; this is obviously less important than a New Yorker cover, but if you're interested in the arcana of politics it's maybe interesting. Meanwhile, McCain foreign policy adviser Randy Scheunemann, who is knee-deep in the failures of the war, suggests that pulling out at the request of al-Maliki would be surrender. Since, clearly, being dependent on the political exigencies of a country half a world away is something all patriots would object to.

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