Or is America deluding itself?
The US top commander in Iraq, General Petraeus, is halfway through his two-day testimony on the effects of the troop surge, and has come under heavy criticism from the Democrat-controlled Congress.
Petraeus has indicated that he thought around 30,000 troops could be withdrawn by the middle of next year, although reaction to his appearance was often split down party lines. Obviously this is a key political moment as the 2008 election approaches, and indeed both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama will be able to directly question the general as he faces the Senate Armed Forces and Foreign Relations Committees.
Clearly, the Republican candidates will be able to approach 2008 with the message that “Iraq is working”. But is it? And what effect, if any, will the Petraeus report have on Britain’s involvement?
Paul Maggs “Double Carpet”
Mike Smithson returns on 17th September