The Manley Report
As for the report...things like this take time to digest. John Manley's a pretty smart guy and my military knowledge is limited to Steven Spielberg movies so I'll try to focus on the political ramifications. And from a political perspective, the key recommendation is to extend the mission indefinitely if other countries pick up some of the slack. Presumably, this will be a big issue when NATO meets in Bucharest this April so one would think the vote won't come until after then...
...or not. If Harper's itching for an election, this might very well be the issue he uses to force it and, with the economy expected to stumble, it might make sense to get things rolling before the next budget. While I could see the Liberals abstaining on the budget, in the words of Stephen Colbert "we're at war, pick a side" - abstaining on this one just isn't an option. Siding with the government would mean the end of one of Dion's best wedge issues so this would be a very hard motion to support. (Then again...)
But let's assume for a minute that Harper takes Manley's recommendation and waits until after Bucharest to hold the vote. What happens if Harper can't talk NATO into ponying up the extra 1,000 troops? Does he pull out then? One presumes Harper's going to get that hypothetical question a lot between now and April and the bluff doesn't really work unless Harper's willing to go all in. Now on the flip side, if he talks NATO allies into picking up the slack and Canadian troops get rotated out of the hot spots, could the Liberals actually oppose it? Well...it'd be a hard vote for Dion to whip.
Interesting times ahead...
UPDATE: Radwanski hits the nail on the head with respect to vote timing:
What we've got is a bit of a chicken-and-egg scenario. Harper can't really go to other countries without first getting the Liberals on board, but if there's any chance at all of the Liberals coming on board it'll only be after those other countries commit to extra troops.
The obvious solution is for the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Official Opposition to sit down like two grown men and plot this thing out. It wouldn't exactly be unique; partisanship is supposed to occasionally take a back seat when your country is at war. But it remains to be seen if either of these two have it in them, let alone both at the same time.