Bush accused critics of his new Iraqi plan of irresponsibility because they offer no alternatives. Sometimes, doing nothing is the hardest and wisest thing. Yitzhak Shamir did nothing about the peace process – he just ignored the Arabs, and they had kept low profile. It took the US government decades to recognize it could do nothing in Vietnam. In Iraq, the realization came sooner. America had its violent periods; Iraq, too, has to pass through the Wild West stage on the possible road to stability. Wisdom of statehood could not be imposed, but only lived out.

Bush’s new strategy is providing security for the population of Baghdad. What for? Rather, stop confiscating their weapons. Let the people counter the guerrillas, if they want to. At the same time that American soldiers die in Iraq and American taxpayers shoulder the immense costs, Iraq continues to sell the US oil at racketeer pricing.

Bush imagines Iraq as an ally in the war on terror. Iraq was exactly such ally, if implicitly, under Saddam who remained at odds with fundamentalists. Democratic, Shiite-dominated Iraq would be Iranian ally.

The optimal use of the American forces in Iraq would be to roll them into Iran, destroy its nuclear and other military facilities, deal a humiliating blow to the rogue state and fly home.

 

Rice threatened Iran with dire consequences for supporting the Iraqi guerrillas who make car bombs. The threat is not credible after the US failed to curb the Iranian nuclear program, admittedly more dangerous than car bombs.

Ms.Clinton was heavily surrounded by US soldiers on her visit to Baghdad. When a politician promotes herself with a trip to Iraq, why make the soldiers into live shields?