Gosh, it seems like only yesterday that setting a fixed deadline for an overseas military withdrawal was a really, really, really bad idea:
President Bush Rejects Artificial Deadline, Vetoes Iraq War Supplemental
... Here is why the bill Congress passed is unacceptable. First, the bill would mandate a rigid and artificial deadline for American troops to begin withdrawing from Iraq. That withdrawal could start as early as July 1st. And it would have to start no later than October 1st, regardless of the situation on the ground.
It makes no sense to tell the enemy when you plan to start withdrawing. All the terrorists would have to do is mark their calendars and gather their strength -- and begin plotting how to overthrow the government and take control of the country of Iraq. I believe setting a deadline for withdrawal would demoralize the Iraqi people, would encourage killers across the broader Middle East, and send a signal that America will not keep its commitments. Setting a deadline for withdrawal is setting a date for failure -- and that would be irresponsible.
On the other hand:
On Thursday, before Sparrow was suspended, Harper said a set pullout date for Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan was necessary to ensure the success of the mission.
Harper, speaking in Montreal, said that without a deadline "the mission will go on forever and we will not be successful."