I am sure that Condoleezza Rice means well.  But she simply is not trained in Mid East matters and is working at the bidding of a constantly changing, incompetent cast of characters.  The latest reports have her flying to Israel, our ‘allies’ in the Middle East, skeptical European countries — all of whom she hopes to enlist against our ‘enemies’ — Iran and Syria — and on behalf of peace and unity for Iraq.

What she and the Bush administration refuse to face are the following facts:

1) Iraq is broken.  The Kurds want nothing better than to go their own way amidst the chaos.  The Shiites want revenge.  The Sunnis there are scared and obviously have no good reason to trust either Maliki or our intentions towards them.

2) The “old Europe” has no good reason to bail us out.  Staying on the side lines is more likely to bring Mid East oil their way.

3) Blair is discredited and allegedly will be withdrawing British troops — the British people have had it with this fiasco, too.

4) For Maliki to cooperate with the U.S. now (with 70% of Iraqis wanting us out of there) would be to sign his own eventual death warrant — some fat chance that he will assist with getting rid of his own supporters.

So Condi will visit, appear in joint news conferences, eat and travel, and return home with not much new in the way of support for a totally discredited U.S. — once considered to be the leader of the free world — now a bully on the run with no place to hide.

“A war is just if there is no alternative, and the resort to arms is legitimate if they represent your last hope.” (Livy cited by Machiavelli)

Ed Kent  718-951-5324 (voice mail only) [blind copies]

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