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August 14, 2005

Reality bites

The Washington Post’s editorial board may be out of control, but at least its reporters still deliver from time to time:

The Bush administration is significantly lowering expectations of what can be achieved in Iraq, recognizing that the United States will have to settle for far less progress than originally envisioned during the transition due to end in four months, according to U.S. officials in Washington and Baghdad.
… “What we expected to achieve was never realistic given the timetable or what unfolded on the ground,” said a senior official involved in policy since the 2003 invasion. “We are in a process of absorbing the factors of the situation we’re in and shedding the unreality that dominated at the beginning.”
… The ferocious debate over a new constitution has particularly driven home the gap between the original U.S. goals and realities after almost 28 months. The U.S. decision to invade Iraq was justified in part by the goal of establishing a secular and modern Iraq that honors human rights and unites disparate ethnic and religious communities.
But whatever the outcome on specific disputes, the document on which Iraq’s future is to be built will require laws to be compliant with Islam. Kurds and Shiites are expecting de facto long-term political privileges. And women’s rights will not be as firmly entrenched as Washington has tried to insist, U.S. officials and Iraq analysts say.
“We set out to establish a democracy, but we’re slowly realizing we will have some form of Islamic republic,” said another U.S. official familiar with policymaking from the beginning, who like some others interviewed would speak candidly only on the condition of anonymity. “That process is being repeated all over.”
… The goal now is to ensure a constitution that can be easily amended later so Iraq can grow into a democracy, U.S. officials say.

And that strategy has worked when and where, exactly, in the recent past?

The Post has actually done a pretty good job here—the entire (longish) article is well worth reading.

Posted by Stephen at 12:01 AM in War | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

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Comments

I loved this article. Though we know it was written by people who hate America and love the terrorists.

Posted by: Thomas at August 14, 2005 4:00 AM