WASHINGTON, June 10 — President Bush's two-day strategy session starting Monday at Camp David is intended to revive highly tangible efforts to shore up Iraq's new government, from getting the electricity back on in Baghdad to purging the security forces of revenge-seeking militias, White House officials said. Three years of efforts to accomplish those goals have largely failed...Indeed it is.
Mr. Bush on Friday made clear that the American commitment to the country will be long-term. Officials say the administration has begun to look at the costs of maintaining a force of roughly 50,000 troops there for years to come, roughly the size of the American presence maintained in the Philippines and Korea for decades after those conflicts.
But no decisions have been made, and Mr. Bush has carefully sidestepped any discussion of a long-term presence, insisting that American forces will be in the country only as long as the Iraqi government wants them there. Mr. Bush's aides said the meeting was not intended to focus on troop levels. But in many ways, that subject is the subtext of the entire discussion.