Baker To Bush: Game Over
November 30, 2006
Today’s report that the blue-ribbon Iraq Study Group, led by former Secretary of State James Baker, will call for a pullback of American combat forces in Iraq is the beginning of the end of the war in Iraq. Stripped of its diplomatic weasel words, the ISG’s recommendations are a stunning blow to the administration of George W. Bush and everything it stands for. “We had to move the national debate from whether to stay the course to how do we start down the path out,” said one of the ISG’s commission members, according to The New York Times.
Faced with the ISG consensus, backed by a determined Democratic majority in Congress that was catapulted into power by an American electorate sick of the war, President Bush will have no choice but to capitulate. Early in 2007, American troops will start to come home. War-weary, mainstream Republicans, eager to get Iraq off the table before the 2008 elections, will strongly support the ISG’s exit strategy. It marks a sweeping, irreversible change of course for American foreign policy, and a death blow to Vice President Dick Cheney and the remaining, but dwindling population of neoconservatives inside the administration.
Adding insult to injury, the policy will be carried out by Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, a former member of the ISG, who will purge the Pentagon of neocons, Rumsfeld loyalists, and assorted other extremists.
Read the rest of the Dreyfuss column here.
The way out of Iraq is now clear.
Al-Sadr with his 35 seat block has left the so-called Iraqi (aka, Green Zone) government. Joining him in walking out were Sunni and Christian members of the government. The government is now fundamentally non-viable, assuming that it once was, in danger of lacking a quorum. The coalition that walked out is demanding a timetable for the withdrawal of occupation forces as the principal condition for their return to the government. The Al-Maliki government will either accept this position or fall – soon. Either way, the next Iraqi government will be one demanding the US military to leave. And Bush and the US military will have no choice but to do so. At that point, they will pat themselves on the back for having created an independent democracy in the Middle East and slink away. Enter the era of the Iraq syndrome.