Yesterday’s interim report on the Iraq war found that most of the benchmarks for progress had not been met. Most seriously it found that the Iraqi armed forces are not ready to step up to the plate. So U.S. forces, according to the President, cannot step down.   For the first time Bush called his adventure in Iraq « the ugly war. »  But as he has on numerous occasions, he begged for patience and said the US must stay the course until victory is assured.

        But this obdurate stance flies in the face of the facts.  A poll this spring found that only 21% of Iraquis think the US troop presence in their country impoves security.  Only 22% support the continued presence of American troops in Iraq.

        It costs $395,000 annually to maintain a single soldier in Iraq.  Or it costs 10 billion a month to keep tropps where they are not wanted.

        Yesterday too the Democratic dominated House of Representatives voted to bring the troops home by April 1.  Bush’s position is that this will led to disaster in Iraq.  But maybe it won’t. The Iraquis themselves don’t seem to think it will. 

        It seems to me the only rational decision is for the Americans o get out of Iraq as quickly as possible.  


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