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Thursday, December 21, 2006

Bush All But Admits to Having No Strategy for Iraq

President Bush's press conference yesterday was pretty light on substance. Most people expected it to be the wrap of his big listening tour. Instead, the Decider announced he hasn't decided what to do about Iraq.

Many expected him to announce a troop increase in Iraq, but with the Democrats in congress skeptical and the Joint Chiefs of Staff unanimously opposed, that didn't happen. All he actually announced was that he thought we were in it for the long haul.

"I'm not going to make predictions about what 2007 will look like in Iraq, except that it's going to require difficult choices and additional sacrifices," Bush said.

'Sacrifices' is a better word for it than Bush likely realizes. From the latin sacrificare, it means 'sacred deed.' A sacrifice is a price paid on faith, with no guarantee of return. Human sacrifice is infamously ineffective. It's what you do when you're desperate and out of ideas.

Bush also made an admission that most people missed. "I have not made up my mind yet about more troops," Bush said. "In order to do so, there must be a specific mission that can be accomplished with more troops."

This is a confession that the war leaders, so full of ideas before the war, have no ideas now. Bush admits that men and women are fighting in Iraq without a mission. Maybe it might be a good idea to come up with some sort of reason the troops who are in Iraq to be in Iraq before we send more. It might be a good idea to have something for them to accomplish.

Bush is finding himself with few allies and no ideas. 'Keep fighting and hope things get better' isn't a strategy.


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