Norm asks all the right questions about the Guardian’s coverage of Bush’s speech last night and concludes:
In a different world the Guardian and the rest of Western liberal opinion would know which side it was on in Iraq today and in the wider global battle. But, as things are, much of that opinion is not entirely clear.
I’ll just pick up on one further point in the Guardian leader today:
Again and again the administration has proclaimed that the war would be over once some necessary stage was passed, whether it was the formation of a government, the drafting of a constitution or the completion of some phase in the training of Iraqi forces.
Ok, leaving aside Bush’s cretinous ‘Mission Accomplished’ comment, could anyone find some quotes where someone in the administration (and I mean a seniorish figure) has said that “the war would be over” once some stage was passed?
I haven’t bothered to do the Google work myself so it may be that someone in the Bush administration said “the war would be over” or a phrase with the same meaning, once an Iraqi government was formed or the constitution drafted or some other stage passed. Just I think I might have noticed.
Has it not perhaps been the case that the administration (and the British government for that matter) have talked about these events as important steps on the road towards ending the violence in Iraq?
There is no doubt that things are going much worse in Iraq than the American administration (and probably many Iraqis) imagined and part of the reason (although only part) is the failure of the Bush team to plan properly for the post-war situation and the lack of a coherent strategy agreed in advance with a wide range of democratic forces in Iraq.
But the idea that the past year has consisted of the US administation telling us the war will be over soon doesn’t seem to be based in much reality.
As I say though, I am willing to accept thatI could wrong, if someone can find the quotes with links to source to back-up the Guardian’s statement then please put it in the comments box below.