Being a cheerful post addressing certain aspects of our nation's priapismic foreign policy

As the national conversation about Iraq grows ever more reasonable, it becomes easier and easier to fall prey to a sort of perverse optimism. Yes, the thinking goes, things are awful, but at least the right questions are being asked. At least the ISG report's assessment of the situation is grounded in reality. At least the Democrats aren't engaging in a more hawkish than thou pissing match with the Republicans. At least the American people seem to understand that this war is an unmitigated disaster. At least, at least, at least.

But, you know, as a certain wise head reminded us today, the President of the United States still has a raging hard on for this war. Maybe, just maybe a new fact has slipped into his worldview. Maybe he now believes that Iraq is spinning out of control into an ever more violent civil war. The question is, what is he going to do with this information?

Well, if the rumors are true then we have a good idea of the first part of his plan. He wants more troops in Baghdad. The thinking seems to be that we won the first battle of Baghdad too quickly, so it's time to start another, bloodier, one.


In second step of the new plan for victory news, Bush seems to be taking certain parts of Powell's we-don't-have-enough-troops-to-control-Baghdad critique seriously:
"I'm inclined to believe that we do need to increase our troops — the Army, the Marines," Bush told the Post. "And I talked about this to Secretary Gates and he is going to spend some time talking to the folks in the building, come back with a recommendation to me about how to proceed forward on this idea."
|The Washington Post|

The article includes the qualification that, "substantial military expansion will take years and would not be meaningful in the near term in Iraq." Which, you know, would be a comforting sentiment if there were some reason to hope that the next near term after this one was going to be one in which the United States wasn't bogged down in Iraq.

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