Thursday, December 01, 2005


NY Times editorial unloads on the President's Continue-to-Stay-the-Course, There-is-Nothing-to-See-Here Speech. The tastiest bit:

Americans have been clamoring for believable goals in Iraq, but Mr. Bush stuck to his notion of staying until 'total victory.' His strategy document defines that as an Iraq that 'has defeated the terrorists and neutralized the insurgency'; is 'peaceful, united, stable, democratic and secure'; and is a partner in the war on terror, an integral part of the international community, and 'an engine for regional economic growth and proving the fruits of democratic governance to the region.'

That may be the most grandiose set of ambitions for the region since the vision of Nebuchadnezzar's son Belshazzar, who saw the hand writing on the wall. Mr. Bush hates comparisons between Vietnam and Iraq. But after watching the president, we couldn't resist reading Richard Nixon's 1969 Vietnamization speech. Substitute the Iraqi constitutional process for the Paris peace talks, and Mr. Bush's ideas about the Iraqi Army are not much different from Nixon's plans - except Nixon admitted the war was going very badly (which was easier for him to do because he didn't start it), and he was very clear about the risks and huge sacrifices ahead.

A president who seems less in touch with reality than Richard Nixon needs to get out more.

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