In the end, the situation in Iraq remains grave. In particular, we still face huge hurdles on the political front. Iraqi politicians of all stripes continue to dawdle and maneuver for position against one another when major steps towards reconciliation — or at least accommodation — are needed. This cannot continue indefinitely. Otherwise, once we begin to downsize, important communities may not feel committed to the status quo, and Iraqi security forces may splinter along ethnic and religious lines.
How much longer should American troops keep fighting and dying to build a new Iraq while Iraqi leaders fail to do their part?
This short excerpt seems to me the only "real" part of the much debated NYT op-ed successfully savaged by Frank Rich and many others in recent days. The authors-- disingenuous initial supporters of the war--fail to provide any meaningful evidence of progress on these, the critical questions. Nor do they suggest any overall strategy for accomplishing goals more permanent than bleeding both (really, multiple) sides toward no ultimate end beyond handing on title to the morass to new administrations in both America and Iraq.
The headline writer's suggestion of "A War We Just Might Win" is utterly ludicrous, even given the endless rounds of defining victory down.