Wednesday, December 06, 2006


Newsweek has apparently hired a Dirty Fucking Hippie.

All that might happen... But, no, I don't think it will. Much more likely is that our dreams in the Middle East a year from now, like this year, last year and the year before, will be nightmares. And that's true even if by then we're "winning."

Every day we move closer to the edge of a humanitarian abyss. Think the Balkans, Rwanda, or Darfur, but with this grim difference: the United States won't be able to stand back from the slaughter and wring its hands in Iraq. It is implicated up to its elbows already, and there's more to come. Attempts to hold Iraq together by political compromise have failed. If the Americans stay there in any way, shape or form, they're going to have to choose sides, backing Iraqi "friends" who will do whatever they think is necessary to impose order.

That was the not-so-coded message from the leader of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, Abdul Aziz al-Hakim shortly after he met with President Bush in the White House on Monday. (Yes, you read the name of his organization right. Hakim's goal is quite explicitly "the Islamic Revolution in Iraq," but, hey, America finds its friends where it can in Baghdad these days.)


The sad fact is that insurgencies are defeated only rarely, and then by imposing the peace of the grave on hundreds of thousands if not millions of people. How much more can Washington let itself be implicated in such carnage? How far over the horizon do American troops need to pull back to escape the stench of such a victory?
One answer: all the way home.