From remarks prepared for delivery in Columbus, Ohio:
"[W]hat I want to do today is take a little time to describe what I would hope to have achieved at the end of my first term as President. ... By January 2013, America has welcomed home most of the servicemen and women who have sacrificed terribly so that America might be secure in her freedom. The Iraq War has been won. Iraq is a functioning democracy, although still suffering from the lingering effects of decades of tyranny and centuries of sectarian tension. Violence still occurs, but it is spasmodic and much reduced. Civil war has been prevented; militias disbanded; the Iraqi Security Force is professional and competent; al Qaeda in Iraq has been defeated; and the Government of Iraq is capable of imposing its authority in every province of Iraq and defending the integrity of its borders. The United States maintains a military presence there, but a much smaller one, and it does not play a direct combat role.'
"Republican presidential candidate John McCain said Thursday he believes the Iraq war can be 'won' within four years, leaving a functioning democracy there and allowing most U.S. troops to come home."