Sunday, November 20, 2005

NYT Special Edition

Here's Frank Rich:

One hideous consequence of the White House's Big Lie - fusing the war of choice in Iraq with the war of necessity that began on 9/11 - is that the public, having rejected one, automatically rejects the other. That's already happening. The percentage of Americans who now regard fighting terrorism as a top national priority is either in the single or low double digits in every poll. Thus the tragic bottom line of the Bush catastrophe: the administration has at once increased the ranks of jihadists by turning Iraq into a new training ground and recruitment magnet while at the same time exhausting America's will and resources to confront that expanded threat.

But if anything, Brooks is even more interesting:

For while the American presence is a catalyst for violence in Iraq, it is not the main catalyst. The main source of violence in Iraq is the sectarian war between the Sunnis and the Shiites.

And, um, gee, why would that be?

In the vacuum of security caused by the botched American occupation, these ethnic tensions have turned into a low-grade civil war.

And, um, maybe the invasion has had something to do with the civil war breaking out, too.

And what about the administration coming clean on what it knows about Iraq, rather than pummeling us with "stay the course" propaganda?

There's one area, though, where I completely sympathize with Jack Murtha. I sympathize with his frustration. On Feb. 23, 1942, Franklin Roosevelt asked Americans to spread out maps before them and he described, step by step, what was going on in World War II, where the U.S. was winning and where it was losing. Why can't today's president do that? Why can't he show that he is aware that his biggest problem is not in Iraq, it's on the home front?

Since the president doesn't give out credible information, it's no wonder Republicans are measuring success by how quickly we can get out;

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