From Hope to Fear in Iraq
By Jim Hoagland Sunday, September 16, 2007; B07
Dreams of spreading democracy through the Arab world shaped President Bush's decision to invade Iraq in 2003. But nightmares keep him -- and U.S. troops -- ensnared there.
The transformation from dream to nightmare illuminates Bush's goals and forward strategy in Iraq more clearly than does last week's deluge of reports, testimony to Congress, stump speeches by presidential candidates and Bush's own statements. In fact, the word-storm served to obscure the shift from hope to fear as the driving force in U.S. policy on Iraq. . .
. . . He has warned of a "nuclear holocaust" if Tehran develops atomic weapons. In his speech to the American Legion last month, Bush also made clear his determination to keep Americans in Iraq -- to fight Iran -- as long as necessary. The web of terrorist networks being spun through the Middle East by Iran demands no less, he argued. . .
President Bush, driven by hubris, his wounded ego and an insistent Dick Cheney, shows every probability of bombing Iran before leaving office.
We are being 'prepared' for this possibility by constant media references to Iranian incursions into and weapons supply to Iraqi insurgents, as well as the drumbeat of nuclear holocaust. Somehow, the Pakistani nuclear capability is not considered a similar problem, although Pakistan is critically unstable and the current refuge of Osama bin Laden.
Thus Nanci Pelosi's unilateral decision to take impeachment of Bush-Cheney 'off the table' and thereby ignore the laws of the land, the constitutional requirement of checks and balances, as well as a significant portion of public opinion has finally become meaningful.
A president, his hands virtually tied (as were Clinton's for a substantial part of his 2nd term) is pretty much unable to drag us into anything so ill-conceived as another 'preemptive' attack on a sovereign nation.
Pelosi, by her own 'preemptive' attack on the duties and obligations of the House of Representatives has now taken into her own hands the responsibility for what George Bush makes of his remaining days in office. One can only hope those hands do not end up with blood on them--American and Iranian.