The presidential contenders on what I think of as the dark side are almost without exception a group of warmongering, bigoted champions of divisiveness, catering to their core supporters. Are their sons and daughters serving in Iraq? Don't ask. In the meantime, from the heartland to the coasts young men and women from ordinary American families are dying every day for the war that Bush-Cheney and the neocons gave us. Karl Rove is gone from the White House but continues to play the same old song. From skewed tax cuts to the war in Iraq and women's right to choose, Republicans' positions are full of distortions and hypocrisy. They are adept in spreading fear. While their personal lives are far from exemplary, Republican politicians wrap themselves in the flag, wave the bible and talk about patriotism, morality and god. They want a victory in Iraq but cannot offer a clear definition of what "victory" means to them. They half-heartedly criticize the way the war has been managed but do not question the justification for it. They have decided to ignore the facts that are known about the lies used by the president to take the nation to war. And except for Giuliani they are falling over each other for support of the anti-choice voters.
How is the president's war going? Fourteen American soldiers died today in a helicopter crash in Northern Iraq, bringing the total to 3722, including 64 this month. Source: iCasualties.org
Jonathan Steele in The Guardian:
- Like Bush, Maliki has become a lame duck. Bush of course can stay in office for another 17 months. Maliki can also stagger on in charge of a minority government, since no other Iraqi seems able or willing to put a different coalition together. And, for all his tough talk about seeing Maliki replaced, Bush is doomed to go on supporting him. A vacuum in Baghdad would look even worse in American voters' eyes.
- In one sense, the crisis only confirms what has been clear for months. Whoever sits in the Green Zone in nominal charge of Iraq's government has little power or authority beyond its walls. Bush's political project for Iraq looks more fragile than ever.