U.S. Should Not Pretend ‘Phased Withdrawal’ Is a Strategy for Victory

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There are no good options in Iraq, which means Americans — who are inclined to believe there is a solution to every problem — are ill-equipped to plot a way forward. The country lies in ruins. Bush’s policy of simply lurching from one bloodbath to the next, from one political crisis to the next, has failed. The military is considering a temporary increase in troop strength, or a longer-term plan to embed many more advisers with Iraqi forces. At this point neither of those plans is likely to succeed, but both represent a last-ditch attempt to avert an utter catastrophe […]

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