Well, if you can't take Chalabi's word for it....Seriously, why is it that this is the only thing Bush insisted on a timetable for? Ironically, this tends to bolster Bush's general point about timetables -- people can just wait them out. Basically, the Sunnis feel pretty cornered right now, and with good reason. The Kurds and Shiites have a lot of payback to administer. Even without the looming specter of Shia death squads tearing al-Anbar a new one soon as we leave, they can just use the newfound institutions of "democracy" to do it, by federalizing the Sunni areas into penury and powerlessness. They know this, that's why they refuse to sign on.
But back to my original point -- the very fact that Ahmad Chalabi vouches for it is all the more reason to scrutinize both the document and the process. Turning over the country to the Vichy Chalabites just puts him in the position of playing us and Iran off against each other for the next decade or so. I'm sure Chalabi will soon have several palaces, if he doesn't already.
So. There's your "noble cause", Dear Leader. How do you like it?
Until the Iranian-backed Sistani group started gaining traction, Pachachi was actually the man. But he's in his 80s and from a minority that, by will of the rest of the country, is about to be put on ice. Make no mistake -- the constitution might get bulled through, and they might get their referendum and all, but the Sunnis will keep pushing toward civil war.
Not only that, but let's face facts -- even if the Sunnis had just signed on willingly, it's still a document that takes the country a few steps toward a theocracy that oppresses women. I don't think anyone signed up for that, and all the anodyne "let's take what we can get" arguments don't change that simple fact.
General Wesley Clark has some ideas that make sense -- which naturally means that they won't be implemented.
Indeed. All we heard in the marketing phase of this clusterfuck was how leaner, meaner fighting forces would enable us to "finish the job" that much faster, because of their greater mobility and adaptability. Logistically, that was true enough -- armies travel on their stomachs, and every general back to Sun Tzu knows that logistics are every bit as key to success as training, strategy, and tactics.
However, where the braintrust fell short was strategy. Strategy is more than having an effective playbook and game plan; it is also about adapting to changing or unforeseen conditions. That is where we fell woefully short. Apparently they really meant it about the expectations of rose petals and candy. They meant it so much they failed even to plan for the possibility that they might have guessed wrong.
Whatever. We're here now, and hopefully the voters will recognize that the morons who insisted on all this are considerably worse than their feckless enablers in the "opposition" party. What do we do now, General?
There's a lot of great points there, and the Vulcans would do well to take them under advisement. Sadly, despite all the talk about how we won't "cut and run", it sure seems like that's what they're preparing for. I don't know how that's possible in the context of all those permanent forward-deployment bases we've set up there, but the current attitude of the beleaguered (by their own ineptitude) administration is that they'd be happy to leave it to Chalabi and friends. And you just never know who this guy keeps around as a "friend". Chalabi is little more than the usual distributor of thick envelopes, and as such, I have no doubt he'll have the place humming like his own personal Indian casino in several years.
But despite Dear Leader's hoary proclamations that the best way to honor our dead is to stay this nebulous course, it seems people are starting to finally wonder about the simplistic Yogi Berra wisdom in Bush's little verbal gems. Better late than never, I suppose. Even Bobo, in his own special way, may be starting to realize it, though he'll never fully admit it.
Oh yeah, someone else is registering their approval and endorsement of the new draft constitution:
Can't say we weren't warned.