Hugh White has some advice for readers:
Don't pay attention to what the Government says about what is happening in Iraq. When John Howard talks about how vital Iraq is in the war on terrorism, he is simply saying what needs to be said to support Bush, and to justify the choices he has made to back Bush's policies over the past five years.More free advice:
Don't take too seriously the options that have been floated from Bush's high-level review over the past few weeks: they have been intended to convince voters the Administration has other options to try once the election is over. The reality is no one has any idea how to stabilise Iraq to the point that the US can decently leave.White thinks Howard will hold on in Iraq "till America can find the exit". Things will only change if Howard's close identification with Bush becomes too much of a politcal liability:
I would not look for the answer in Baghdad, or even in Washington. Ask Howard's pollsters. Crosby Textor will decide.