Only this president could look out over a vista of 3,008 dead and 22,834 wounded in Iraq, and finally say, “Where mistakes have been made, the responsibility rests with me” – only to follow that by proposing to repeat the identical mistake … in Iran.
Only this president could extol the “thoughtful recommendations of the Iraq Study Group,” and then take its most far-sighted recommendation – “engage Syria and Iran” – and transform it into “threaten Syria and Iran” – when al-Qaida would like nothing better than for us to threaten Syria, and when Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would like nothing better than to be threatened by us.
This is diplomacy by skimming; it is internationalism by drawing pictures of Superman in the margins of the text books; it is a presidency of Cliff Notes.
And to Iran and Syria – and, yes, also to the insurgents in Iraq – we must look like a country run by the equivalent of the drunken pest who gets battered to the floor of the saloon by one punch, then staggers to his feet, and shouts at the other guy’s friends, “Ok, which one of you is next?”
Mr. Bush, the question is no longer “What are you thinking?” but rather “Are you thinking at all?”