Regular citizens and senators from both sides of the isle are now calling for a timetable for withdrawl from Iraq. The President refuses to set one, believing that this would send the wrong signal to the insurgency.
It seems so simple; set a timetable for withdrawl but make it conditional. We will pull out on such and such a date, but only if violence has lessened this much, or the Iraqi army is now of a certain size, etc.
As I understand it, it is our presence in a country that really incenses the Islamic extremeists. By setting a conditional timetable we use both the carrot and the stick; the extremeists have their main motivating factor removed, but only if the country is really in good shape at the time. Seems like a no-brainer to me. Who loses?
That is, of course, unless WE have no real plans to leave.