Even with Karl Rove back in Texas Bush's people know how to get what they want from the American people. Despite polls showing that about 75 percent of Americans are not happy with the way he has handled Iraq, he's going to keep roughly 130,000 troops over there until he leaves office.
He accomplished this feat, as with everything else, through propaganda. He poured 30,000 more troops into Iraq and now is going to pull out about the same amount. The press calls it a "troop reduction," like a front-page headline in USA Today proclaimed the other day, and down the memory hole goes the fact that the so-called surge failed on all accounts.
The Democrats have neither the votes nor the guts to cut off the funding.
We're back at square one; right where we were last January.
Cholera has broken out in northern Iraq with over 7,000 cases reported. The fears are it will spread to Baghdad. Iraqis protesting the construction of yet another American-built giant concrete wall separating neighborhoods goes largely unreported. The latest estimate is that one million Iraqis have been killed since 2003. There has been no "reconciliation" among Iraq's many factions and sects. The ethnic cleansing continues.
Our long-time friends and allies ask more in sadness than in anger: What has happened to America?
All the Bush Administration and its allies in Congress have done is prolong the agony of the Iraqis, the U.S. troops, and ultimately, the American people.
Congressional Republicans march in lockstep behind Representative John Boehner telling us that everything is going peachy in Iraq. The Senate is a little different, but the Republicans there too are just putting on a show of dissent. They'll fall in line when the votes on continuing the occupation are taken. Just watch Arlen Spector.
Now Bush's mouthpieces ratchet up the rhetoric against Iran, as if launching a 1,200 target cruise missile and B-2 bomber raid is going to make the situation better.
Bush has yet to learn about the limits of military power.
Voting to give Bush another $50 billion to continue this illegal and unpopular occupation of Iraq only wets his appetite for bigger game, like Iran. We need to stop appeasing the Decider and put the brakes on his belligerent course.
I will watch his speech in a half hour. But like the Petraeus-Crocker testimony, I already know what he is going to say.