Monday, March 5, 2007

Top commander: Iraq 'surge' a 1-in-4 longshot

Sen. Gordon Smith told an audience Friday in Oregon that Gen. David Petraeus, the new top military commander in Iraq, recently told him the troop surge has only a one-in-four chance of succeeding, the Oregonian reported. Hat tip to the Rachel Maddow Show's Buried the Lead, one of my favorite features in talk radio.

And there is no Plan B, says seemingly everyone from head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Gen. Peter Pace to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the Washington Post reported Monday.

Then there's still the perennial question: Success of what? There never were WMD, not even the long-rotted chemicals Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld sold Saddam Hussein when they were friends in the 1980s. It'll be four years in May that "Mission Accomplished" was declared; Saddam was captured more than three years ago and is now dead; George Bush (God of the world) declared Iraq sovereign, and democratic elections chose its government just in time to make George look good for his own presumed election in 2004. Think Progress has a timeline with source citations.

Yet at every step, this White House has mucked up the bloody civil war we unleashed in Iraq more and more. But luck be a lady this time? Someone who goes back to the poker table in Atlantic City with 1-in-4 odds, after losing miserably at every hand for four full years, would be called a gambling addict. What do you call a president who can't figure out when to fold 'em?

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