The power brokers in Washington spent the week carefully arranging fig leaves and tasteful screens to cover the emperor’s nakedness while he was busy pretending to listen hard to everyone with an opinion about Iraq while hearing nothing.
Sometime early in the New Year, President Bush will go on national television to tell a disgruntled American public what he's decided should be done to salvage "victory" from the jaws of certain defeat in the war he started...
The White House hopes that its much-trumpeted reshuffling of a failed strategy and flawed tactics will buy time for their bad luck to change miraculously. That this time will be bought and paid for with the lives and futures of our soldiers and Marines - and their families - apparently means little to these wise men who've never heard a shot fired in anger.
This president has made it painfully obvious that he has no intention of listening to anyone who doesn’t believe that he's going to win in Iraq. He'll march stubbornly onward without any real change of course until high noon on January 20, 2009, when his successor will inherit both the hard decision to pull out of Iraq and the back bills for his reckless, feckless misadventure.
The midterm election that handed control of Congress to the Democrats can be ignored. His own approval rating in the polls, now at an all-time low of 27 percent - likewise means little or nothing.
Only President Bush’s definition of reality carries any weight with him and therein lies the tragedy - both his and ours...
Did you notice that at every stop on the President’s information-gathering tour this week, there was a very familiar face looming over his shoulder? There was Vice President Dick Cheney, looking as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.
Should the president suddenly have an original thought or seem to be going wobbly, Cheney will be right there to squelch it or to set him straight.
It can be argued that George W. Bush understood little about war and peace and diplomacy and honesty in government. Cheney understood all of it, and he bears much of the responsibility for what's gone on in Washington, D.C. and in Iraq for the last six years. Keep a sharp eye on him. Desperate men do desperate things.