Virtually everybody who doesn't work in the White House -- and many who do -- agree that we are losing in Iraq. There are only bad options left. If the administration were responsible, they would admit this fact, delineate the possible options, and choose the least bad one.
Unfortunately, they have a long track record of dishonesty. They and their toadies smeared for a long time those who dared to speak the truth -- that we are losing. Finally, after getting pummeled in the recent election, they've allowed that perhaps we aren't winning quickly enough.
Tim P. (via Andrew Sullivan) makes this prediction:
My feeling is that Iraq will play out just like the “preparations” for insurgency did. For political reasons withdrawal will be treated as a naughty word, stifling discussion and heading off planning until it becomes absolutely unavoidable. Then when the light finally goes on we will have a chaotic bugout with huge, avoidable losses of men and materiel.
Unfortunately, I suspect he's dead-on. The administration will smear anyone who suggests we might have to cut our losses and leave. (The dreaded "cut and run.") They'll do so right until there is absolutely no other option. Then it will be an unplanned, "chaotic bugout with huge, avoidable losses of men and materiel." Then they'll blame the Democrats.
If they're responsible, we can minimize the damage we do by leaving. We can set a timetable and do our best to prepare the Iraqi army. We can take other diplomatic and military options to make our inevitable withdrawal less harmful. But they're not responsible. They're going to wait and wait and soldiers are going to keep dying until finally the truth is absolutely undeniable, and then they'll bug out in an awful mess and blame the Democrats.