Gone 'Til November


Raise your hand if you're surprised by this:

On the military front, Petraeus told members of Congress in the private meeting that he had seen some "tactical momentum" since infusing Baghdad with additional U.S. soldiers.

Petraeus' deputy in Iraq, Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno, later told reporters he would need beyond September to tell if improvements represent long-term trends.

"In order to do a good assessment I need at least until November," he said.

November, not the September we've been talking about since… oh, January. We were told in March that the troop surge was starting to have an impact. We were told this month that, no, the troop surge just started in earnest and was starting to have an impact.

Facts on the ground change, of course. Expectations change. But Rep. Wayne Gilchrest wasn't wrong when he said "The goalposts are moved on a regular basis. This football field isn't 100 yards. This football field has gotten about 3000 yards long."