Friday, February 20, 2004

Wrong on Every Count

He said it. Not me.

WASHINGTON -- The top U.S. military officer said Thursday he could not estimate with confidence how long American forces will have to stay in Iraq.

"I really do believe it's unknowable," said Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in an interview with a group of reporters. "If I gave a good professional estimate, then that would be a standard that people would point to and, knowing that we can't know it perfectly, we'd get hammered."


"Actually, the things we've sat around and talked about before have been wrong on every count," he said with a chuckle. "So that's probably another reason why I don't want to" discuss it. Although he did not mention it, U.S. officials had assumed when Baghdad fell to U.S. forces last April that tens of thousands of troops could be withdrawn within a few months.