Bush Plan Would Bring 5K Troops Back by Holidays

Progress on security allows withdrawal, president to tell nation
By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 13, 2007 6:08 PM CDT
U.S. President George W. Bush waves as he steps down Air Force One upon his arrival at the Sydney airport Tuesday evening, Sept. 4, 2007, following his unannounced visit to Iraq. Bush is expected to meet...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – In a speech tonight, President Bush will outline a plan to bring 5,700 US troops home from Iraq by Christmas, claiming enough security objectives have been met to allow the withdrawal. The New York Times reports that Bush is following the recommendations of Gen. David Petraeus and Ryan Crocker, US ambassador to Iraq, who testified before Congress this week.

“The principle guiding my decisions on troop levels in Iraq is ‘return on success,’ ” Bush says, maintaining that the US must not abandon Iraq. “The more successful we are, the more American troops can return home.” He also will try to bring Democrats on board, saying that "preventing chaos and providing hope in the Middle East" are common goals.