29 Nov. Washington Times - U.S. Decimating Foreign Fighters.

The U.S. is seeing significantly fewer foreign fighters on the battlefields of Iraq, because the coalition has killed or captured scores of terrorists in recent months and is doing a better job of securing the long border with Syria.

But the U.S. military has noticed in recent weeks a willingness of young Iraqis to become suicide bombers, once the monopoly of ideologically driven foreign jihadists.

We are killing them, a senior Pentagon official said yesterday, when asked about shrinking foreign-fighter numbers in Iraq.

The trend is one reason that the Bush administration is talking more confidently about reducing the American troop presence next year to less than a base level of 138,000. Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has said the current 160,000 level will revert to 138,000 after the Dec. 15 parliamentary elections.