Is it really that time of the year already?
Posing with soldiers, shaking hands and hanging out with his overworked military homies; Bush’s attempts to shed his impotent lame-duck Presidency tag are going into overdrive at the mo, anything to prove that the costly surge was worth it.
It all took place in the Anbar Province, to prove no doubt that American might is winning in this lengthy and fatigued combat excursion; I’m frankly amazed that the US is sticking it out and well it should, but for how much longer, as the UK eases itself out of the reconstruction quagmire?
But the success of a pacified Anbar Province is very relative indeed; Iraq is still gripped by regular atrocities that would be cause for serious concern anywhere else in the world, apart from in Iraq where it counts as a pyrrhic victories.
Having said that, Anbar provides some glimmer of hope in that local Iraqi communities are starting to realise that working in tandem with non-Iraqi al-Qaeda units is not the best way forward for a stable and productive Iraq. It frustrates me that this was an option in the first place; there is a difference between anger at US/UK occupation and wanton collaboration with destructive and divisive extremist elements.
But then look at the shambles of a government, ruled by petty personal, religious interests rather than being able to see the bigger picture for the safety and security of Iraq and it’s long suffering people.
We can but hope that there is more to the improvement in Iraq than photo-ops by President Bush.