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Listen to the troops on the ground, Feb. 28, 2006

Things appear to be spiraling out of control for the forces of moderation in Iraq.

Despite what you may hear from apologists for a wrong-headed foreign policy, the country is in a state of civil war,

just like every expert on the Middle East predicted,

and 130,000 U.S. troops are stuck in the middle of it.

President Bush has long maintained that when it comes to deciding about what needs done militarily in Iraq, he would listen to the commanders on the ground in Iraq. Forgetting for a moment that I always thought that our system was set up so that the military took their orders from the civilian leadership, not the other way around, perhaps it’s time to start listening to the troops on the ground in Iraq.

A poll released today by LoMoyne College and Zogby reports that an overwhelming 72 percent majority of American troops serving in Iraq think the U.S. should exit the country within the next year and nearly one in four say the troops should leave immediately.

The survey, however, was conducted between Jan. 18 and Feb. 14, just before the recent disintegration into open sectarian warfare.

I wonder what the numbers would look like today?

The administration, of course, has everything n EVERTHING n riding on a successful outcome to our incursion in Iraq and a president with a 34 percent approval rating (according to a CBS poll released today, an approval rating that in the third world compels the generals to start planning a coup) has nothing to lose by seeing it through to the bitter end. The 130,000 troops there, however, and our nation and much of the rest of the world have a lot to lose.

Please say a prayer for our men and women in the middle of that hell hole. It looks like they are going to need it.