Four months ago, Steve Rendall wrote here (9/10/10) about the militarization of the State Department and its role in the continuing occupation of Iraq–developments that were getting little attention amidst all the talk of the "end" of thewar.
Now Aaron Davis of the Washington Post (1/14/11) fills in some of those details,writing that "the contours of a large and lasting American presence here are starting to take shape." Davis adds that:
Planning is underway to turn over to the State Department some of the most prominent symbols of the U.S. role in the war–including several major bases and a significant portion of the Green Zone.
The department would use the bases to house a force of private security contractors and support staff that it expects to triple in size, to between 7,000 and 8,000, U.S. officials said.
The piece is worth reading, despite its unfortunate headline: "U.S. Plans for Presence in Iraq After Pullout." Obviously, if you're planning on being present somewhere, then you're not really "pulling out."