Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Stranger | Seattle | Slog: The Stranger's Blog | Our Long National Nightmare:

Everyone had their scripted roles: Bush played Churchill, the Democrats played the loyal opposition, the press acted portentious, as if this was some kind of truly momentous turning point, the protesters outside the White House screamed as if their hoarse shouts made any difference. The only thing interesting about the whole ritualized charade was what Bush did not say.

He did not say “Sadr”—though he hinted that we would soon be fighting house-to-house in the endless slums of Sadr City. He did not say “escalation,” or even “surge.” Our commitment, apparently, is open-ended. He did not say, as was expected, that the US would invest $1 billion in a new jobs program to pacify angry Iraqis. He did not say “Democrats”—though he denounced “pessimists.”

Most importantly, he also didn’t announce any tangible benchmarks to measure—at some point—the success of his plan.

1:51 AM