My answer was as follows:
I believe that Lt. Col. Glen Butler is incorrect when he asserts that the “center of gravity” in the Iraq War is the American population. That center always was and always will be the Iraqi poulation. Non-US journalists interviewed Iraqi civilians after the fall of Baghdad in 2003 and found a very wary, skeptical population. Iraqis were, in general, pleased that their dictator had been removed from office, but very suspicious as to US motives for having done so.
The fact that “The undermanned Iraqi army and police units are challenged by corruption, desertion and enemy infiltration” is no accident and relates directly to suspicion over US motives for having invaded in the first place. No matter how many individual success stories occur, it's clear after more than three years of occupation that those suspicions remain as strong as ever.
The US Army cannot remain indefinitely where it is not wanted and Iraqis as a whole have made it clear through the people they have elected that the US is an unwelcome presence in their country. The Bush Administration laid out a detailed plan involving many “purple finger moments,” but the fact that those plans have been successfully accomplished with all the proper checkboxes checked off and the fact that Iraqis are still very sour on the idea of being occupied by US troops indefinitely means those plans have failed.It's time to call an end to the experiment and to bring US troops home.