It was a huge mistake to attack Iraq, and now we are cleaning up the mess. I'm all in favor of The Pottery Barn Rule. But if Bush is really planning to attack Iran, he would make a mistake of colossal proportions.
Since we are in Iraq, and we must fix what we have helped to break, I support General Petraeus in what everyone is calling "The Surge", even though it isn't much of a surge. It's actually a successful implementation of Counterinsurgency Tactics (working together with the populace to defeat the enemy instead of treating everyone like they are the enemy) that has caused most of the improvements in Iraq. These tactics, when implemented in limited areas of Iraq by Petraeus when he was a brigade commander, had wonderful success. I see the fact that these tactics are now being implemented nation-wide as a very good thing. Paetraeus is not betraying us, as some quarters have suggested. Petraeus is not George W. Bush's yes man, as they would have you believe.
What I do not support, however, is the rumors I'm hearing that President Bush is looking to attack Iran before the end of his last term.
Fox News recently reported:
Political and military officers, as well as weapons of mass destruction specialists at the State Department, are now advising Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that the diplomatic approach favored by Burns has failed and the administration must actively prepare for military intervention of some kind. Among those advising Rice along these lines are John Rood, the assistant secretary for the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation; and a number of Mideast experts, including Ambassador James Jeffrey, deputy White House national security adviser under Stephen Hadley and formerly the principal deputy assistant secretary for Near Eastern affairs.
Consequently, according to a well-placed Bush administration source, "everyone in town" is now participating in a broad discussion about the costs and benefits of military action against Iran, with the likely timeframe for any such course of action being over the next eight to 10 months, after the presidential primaries have probably been decided, but well before the November 2008 elections. (Emphasis added.)
Bush has made life for himself and his Administration way too simplistic (similar to the simplistic nature of their Iraq battle plans) by declaring the concept of pre-emptive strike against terrorists. From that standpoint it becomes much simpler to propagandize against any group to convince the American populace that 'any group' is a terrorist organization. This is a huge mistake. If we really knew the whole story about Iran, Iraq, and North Korea (charter members of Bush's "Axis of Evil"), to include America's provocations and attempts to exacerbate problems in these countries, it would surprise us. Instead we prefer the titillation of propaganda to the patient research required to unearth historical reality.
As for Iran, at best it would be the duty of the next US president to determine if Iran warrants being attacked. Hopefully that's all the Bush administration is doing is putting together contingency plans. But it doesn't sound that way according to the report from Fox News.
If George W. Bush is really rattling his saber against the Iranians with the hope of having an attack consummated by next November, I suggest congress dust of its impeachment binders, roll up their sleeves, and get to work. At the least it would sidetrack his attempts to colonize yet another Middle Eastern country. At best it would highlight the grossly inadequate way with which another Establishmentarian has mismanaged American foreign policy. And it might get the President released from his job a couple months early.