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Today’s Iraq Redeployment Made Possible by Our Deadline

In his Iraq speech tonight, President Obama has an opportunity to explain to Americans how the United States and Iraq got to the point where the combat mission had to end by a date certain and explain how his administration can apply these lessons to the ongoing struggle in Afghanistan.

Conventional wisdom among America’s foreign policy establishment is that setting deadlines for troop withdrawals from war zones are detrimental for U.S. national security. But this foreign policy establishment is just as wrong about why America is leaving Iraq by a date certain as they were about why we had to go to war in Iraq in the first place.

The above excerpt was originally published in Foreign Policy.