My colleague Rod Dreher has written a brilliant entry about Iraq and today’s report. I encourage you to read it. Here is how it begins:
Well, I’ve read as much of it as I can manage this afternoon, and it’s pretty depressing stuff. The best thing about it is that it shifts the debate away from the administration’s blue-sky, open-ended commitment to the Maliki government, and ratifies a “graceful exit” — which Bush said last week was nuts — as the establishment consensus position. With this report coming on the heels of the election, Bush is now completely isolated. Iraq, at least as he imagined it would be, is now a fantasy only he entertains. And it might be lost completely, the report says, painting an extremely grim picture of what would likely result were that to transpire.
Get to know that scenario, because it’s going to be playing out in the front pages over the next few years. That’s because the ideas that Baker-Hamilton come up with to try to stabilize the situation are pretty weak. It’s not their fault, exactly; there simply aren’t any options left.