from Glenn Greenwald

(the gist)

. . . these are the premises which Friedman, prior to the invasion, expressly embraced:

1. If the war is done the right way, great benefits can be achieved.
2. If the war is done the wrong way, unimaginable disasters will result.
3. The Bush administration is doing this war the wrong way, not the right way, on every level.
4. Given all of that, I support the waging of this war.

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John McCain . . . expressly argues:

1. It is immoral to stay in Iraq if we don't send in more troops.
2. We are not going to send in more troops.
3. I oppose withdrawal and think we should stay in Iraq.

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Establishment Washington really is not interested in how to end this horrendous and despicable debacle we unleashed in Iraq. They are not interested in how to maximize U.S. interests. They are only interested in how to find a way to bring this disaster to some sort of slow resolution that looks as though it is a respectable and decent outcome- anything that makes it seem like it wasn't a horrendous mistake in the first place. That is what the Baker-Hamilton Commission is about and it's what all of these Beltway analysts are doing by endorsing these premises:

1. Things in Iraq are disastrous and our current policy there is a total failure.

2. Our troop presence is not improving the situation; things have gotten steadily worse.

3. There may be goals that, if theoretically met, would improve things, but those goals can't and won't be met- either because we lack the resources or because they are just not achievable.

4. No matter what, we absolutely cannot begin withdrawing, and those who want to do so are radical and unserious.

The Tom Friedman disease consumes Establishment Washington

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