"The British army is not on the"verge of collapse" - see pw. above. The British army, like the American army at present, is incredibly stretched and subject to stress - falling recruitment levels, long tours of duty, wear and tear on equipment, high levels of mental stress among troops. But on the verge of collapse? The French army in 1917 on the Western Front mutinied; the Italian army retreate from Caporetto was a chaotic debacle; the Iraqi army in the first gulf war fell apart at the first hint of allied assault. Those are what you would call collapses. There will be no such collapse - not mutiny nor blind panic stricken chaotic retreat - that will afflict the British or American armies.
pw imagines the politician who associates himself with withdrawal from Iraq will win the election. Not true. Iraq and Afghanistan are unpopular wars/occupations here but are not by any stretch of the imagination deeply significant factors in elections. Iraq rarely makes the headlines and usually is on somewhere like page six, bottom paragraph of the newspapers, or item four in the TV news broadcasts. The next election will be won or lost on the performance of the economy, and a judgement of the Government's general level of competence. Only one political leader has openly and unequivocably called for an end to the occupation - Menzies Cambell, leader of the Liberal Democratic party. This will in the next election, as it always does, get 20 to 25% of the votes and 10% of the seats in the Commons. The old Liberal party (now theLiberal Democrats) last governed Britain in the period during and immediately after the Great War of 1914 -1918. Campbell has not a snowball in hell's chance of becoming the next PM. Cameron, leader of the Conservative party, will remain uncommitted on the issue of whether or not to withdraw British troops; Browne, our "socialist" PM will continue to promise to stand "shoulder to shoulder" with the Americans while he quietly desrts them and oversees the slow withdrawal from Basra." Mike G