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AP: War Czar "skeptical of Iraq troop plan"

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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-06-07 05:56 PM
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AP: War Czar "skeptical of Iraq troop plan"

War adviser skeptical of Iraq troop plan

By ANNE FLAHERTY, Associated Press Writer 4 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute, picked by President Bush as his White House war adviser, said Wednesday he had been skeptical of Bush's decision to send thousands more U.S. troops into Iraq.

In a written response to questions by the Senate Armed Services Committee, Lute confirmed news reports that he had voiced doubts during a White House-led policy review that led to Bush's Jan. 10 announcement that 21,500 more combat troops would go to Baghdad and Anbar province.

The buildup was hotly contested in Congress, including among several Republicans who favored greater pressure on Iraqi security forces to take over combat.

"During the review, I registered concerns that a military 'surge' would likely have only temporary and localized effects unless it were accompanied by counterpart 'surges' by the Iraqi government and the other, nonmilitary agencies of the U.S. government," Lute wrote in a document obtained by The Associated Press.

"I also noted that our enemies in Iraq have, in effect, 'a vote' and should be expected to take specific steps to counter from our efforts," he added. "The new policy took such concerns into account. It is too soon to tell the outcome."

Lute was scheduled to testify in public for the first time Thursday since being picked for the position.

If confirmed by the Senate, Lute would hold the title of deputy national security adviser. He would report directly to the president briefing Bush daily and work with other government agencies, including the Pentagon and the State Department.

<...>

Several senators were expected to question whether putting a three-star general at the White House now amounts to too little, too late to salvage a deeply unpopular war.

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Looks like Lute doesn't want to be scapegoated. Still, what are the chances he will not fall into line once confirmed?
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