Russ Hoyle is the author of Going to War (Thomas Dunne Books, St. Martin's Press, 2008), a detailed account of the 18-month run-up to the Iraq war. He is a former senior editor at the New York Daily News, Time, and the New Republic. Hoyle is at work on a new book about counterinsurgency and the U.S. military.

Bad news for President Obama. Iraq is wilting under a rash of suicide attacks and sectarian violence that has made the “gains” of the previous year look illusory.

Many who voted for him have cheered Obama's plan to withdraw from Iraq, but they may be dismayed to learn just how long and deep a commitment he’s considering for Afghanistan.