Obama wants three more FUs for Iraq

For those who don’t know what a Friedman Unit is, here’s the Wikipedia definition:

The Friedman, or Friedman Unit (F.U.), is a tongue-in-cheek neologism coined by blogger Atrios (Duncan Black) on May 21, 2006.[1]

A Friedman is a unit of time equal to six months in the future.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8] The Huffington Post cited it as the “Best New Phrase” of 2006.[9]

The term is in reference to a May 16, 2006 article by Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) detailing journalist Thomas Friedman’s repeated use[10] of “the next six months” as the period in which, according to Friedman, “we’re going to find out…whether a decent outcome is possible” in the Iraq War. As documented by FAIR, Friedman had been making such six-month predictions for a period of two and a half years, on at least fourteen different occasions, starting with a column in the November 30, 2003 edition of The New York Times, in which he stated: “The next six months in Iraq-which will determine the prospects for democracy-building there-are the most important six months in U.S. foreign policy in a long, long time.”[11]

The term has been used in general to describe any pronouncement of a critical period for the U.S. occupation of Iraq.[12][7] Such pronouncements have been made by numerous politicians and military officials involved in the war.[13][14][15]

Now let’s hear from Obama, the candidate who promised to end the war in Iraq:

Obama-next 18 months critical for Iraq

07 Apr 2009 15:33:51 GMT

Source: Reuters

BAGHDAD, April 7 (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama, visiting U.S. troops in Iraq, told them on Tuesday that the next 18 months would be critical for their mission in the country.

This is going to be a critical period, these next 18 months,” Obama said, referring to the Aug 2010 deadline for the withdrawal of all U.S. combat troops from Iraq.

“You will be critical in terms of us being able to make sure Iraq is stable, that it is not a safe haven for terrorists, and we can start bringing our folks home,” Obama told troops at Camp Victory, the sprawling U.S. military base on the outskirts of Baghdad.

18 months = 3 Friedman Units


  1. timeline that we can point to, when it passes, that we were supposed to end this insane occupation.  That’s different from Bush when we didn’t know, at least until the SOFA talk at the end.  I would say, then we can turn up the heat, but they’ll surely use the “conditions on the ground” bullshit to pacify the citizens.  

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