Panel to Seek Change on Iraq

Early this year I sent an email to a friend in response to something complementary he said about our troops but implying that anyone against the Iraq invasion somehow denigrated these troops. In that email I mentioned the recent convening by President Bush of a study group whose objective was to analyze the Iraq situation and make recommendations. I was elated that Bush was taking a step towards obtaining some rational advice from some rational people. That fact represented, if true, a major change in the administration’s outlook. Here’s a quote from the email:

We have the finest, best trained armed forces in the world, composed of fine men and women. They do with utter loyalty whatever their civilian masters tell them to do. I am a proud veteran. Most of my friends are proud veterans.

These fine men and women are being cynically used and abused in Iraq, the invasion of which is the worst strategic mistake this country has ever made. I fear the morons who manage our government are too stupid and filled with self pride to acknowledge their pitiful ignorance and the nature of their mistake. On the other hand, there may be a glimmer of hope. Unless it is strictly for show (and I suspect it could well be), the recent convening of a group of advisers to the White House – consisting of some real heavyweights such as Jim Baker and Brent Scowcroft – could signal at least a tentative willingness to accept some rational analysis and advice.

Let’s face it, I was becoming rather optimistic. Then this article appears in the LA Times many months later (today) which tends to feed my optimism:

A commission backed by President Bush that is exploring U.S. options in Iraq intends to propose significant changes in the administration’s strategy by early next year, members say.

Two options under consideration would represent reversals of U.S. policy: withdrawing American troops in phases, and bringing neighboring Iran and Syria into a joint effort to stop the fighting.

While it weighs alternatives, the 10-member commission headed by former Secretary of State James A. Baker III has agreed on one principle.

“It’s not going to be ‘stay the course,’ ” one participant said. “The bottom line is, [current U.S. policy] isn’t working…. There’s got to be another way.”

So now my optimism is charging full ahead while still I pray that this isn’t just another ruse. Let’s all “pray” that the insane policies of this administration can be at least partially reversed and that all is not lost.

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