Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Four more years

This article about the brand-new "grim assessment" of Iraq's future by a commission of intelligence officers not only contradicts Bush's Pollyanna-ish outlook for that nation after the elections, but contains a hint of what we can expect from the Administration if things continue to go poorly. The Shiites will gain power in the elections, the Sunnis and others will continue to wage violent insurgency, the Shiites will try to placate them by setting a firm schedule for US withdrawal of its forces (the US will be consulted no doubt, and there'll be conditions and caveats galore) and then as the time-limits arrive and we commence withdrawal, leaving a "residual force" or something, Bush will claim victory. He'll have saved face, the NeoCons will have their vested power in Iraq to control the Middle East and protect Israel, and Iraq, though still torn apart by fractious war, will be no threat to anybody except itself.

Okay, so the article doesn't say all of the foregoing, but I do.

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