Sunday, August 15, 2004

It's about Time

The Observer, at Guardian Unlimited, tells us:
US to redeploy 100,000 troops and shut bases

Peter Beaumont
Sunday August 15, 2004
The Observer

President George Bush will announce tomorrow that the US military will pull up to 100,000 troops out of Europe and Asia in the biggest redeployment since the end of the Cold War [14 years ago!].

The plan will see a number of US bases in Germany closed down [good!], and troops returned home or redeployed to Eastern Europe.

The redeployment - first reported by The Observer in February last year in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq - will be presented by Bush as a logical response to the war on terrorism [true] when he addresses the 2.6 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars at its annual convention in Cincinnati.

In February last year, however, when the proposal was first mooted, Pentagon officials presented the closure of the bases in Germany as punishment for Germany's refusal to back the war in Iraq [also true].

Pentagon officials, who confirmed the planned announcement in yesterday's Washington Post, said the change is necessary to adapt the nation's military to the demands of the global war on terrorism and to take advantage of new technology [also true].

But the planned restructuring also comes amid overstretch in a US army struggling to juggle commitments in Iraq, Afghanistan and other theatres, and has been responsible for declining morale particularly in combat units.... [Another good reason for pulling troops out of Germany.]
So many good things can flow from one rational decision. Of course, being Americans, we'll probably help Germany again if it falls under the rule of an evil dictator or is threatened by an evil empire to its east.