endgameHere, in a nutshell -- in a comment from a war supporter at Timothy Burke's blog -- is the reasoning that explains how the American experiment with Iraq will end, and I do mean will:
The crucial part of the story you are avoiding is that our idealism was not idealism in a vacuum, but a very specific idealism, predicated on the belief that the Iraqi people and elites, offered the chance, would take sufficient constructive efforts toward liberal democracy on their own behalf to sustain it without us–after all, we were never interested in imposing a pure colonial regime on them for their own good. You say the Iraqis have lost faith in us? I submit to you that it is *we* who are losing faith in the Iraqis. I will accept for the sake of argument that the US has not behaved with perfect competence in Iraq, but I (and many others) can also say that given an imperfect world, the Iraqis have behaved more corruptly and barbarously than needed; that they have underperformed expectations.Fucking savages -- we gave them freedom, and they couldn't handle it. A shame we mistook them for normal human beings like us. But ah, oh well.
See also the lead editorial in the March 4 issue of The Economist, which laments the fact that "Iraqis are continuing their march of folly."
So then we bail out on these hopeless and backward people, and the reckoning goes hot. Not our fault; what could we do? All we did was invade the country, overthrow their government, and institute a military occupation for a few years -- how could we be held responsible for anything that happens there?
Like Secretary Rumsfeld says, hey, it's their country.
Now, about Iran...