This country is in trouble. Both sides of the political spectrum are tragically wrong about the "Way Forward" in Iraq, and I see no evidence that either side could lead this country effectively right now.
I saw nothing in President Bush's demeanor to suggest that he really believes in this new plan or that it is at all likely to be successful. He has to know that the Iraqis will not follow through on their commitments either militarily, legislatively, or politically. What the President just laid out COULD work very well if it were executed properly, but we all know that is just not going to happen. Relying on these people for anything is a recipe for disaster as they are completely unworthy of our trust.
Unfortunately, I think President Bush knows this and is basically setting the Iraqi government up for the fall WHEN this plan goes sideways. The premise, as I see it, is that once the Iraqi units don't show up/refuse to fight, or the Oil money legislation doesn't happen, or Maliki's favorite Shi'a get a pass, then the President will be able to point the finger and say, "We tried to help you out, but you squandered your last opportunity. Bu-bye, have fun with the genocide."
On the other side, the Democrats response was actually pretty accurate on the assessment of the situation (with the requisite partisan barbs thrown in for good measure), but as usual, they completely fail to recognize the consequences of their course of action. Talk about history repeating itself; this is eerily reminiscent of the Democrat's Vietnam playbook. This is one of the reasons that liberals in charge are so scary. They have no compunction about guaranteeing and then ignoring a good old fashioned genocide. That is what's coming in Iraq as soon as we leave. Scarier still is the idea that when we left Vietnam to a well trained (compared to the Iraqis) South Vietnamese Army, they didn't just cut off direct military assistance when the North came down, they cut off ALL economic aid. This is probably what they will do to the Iraqis even if we secure Baghdad and train up their Army. Once we're out, and the Iranians start moving in, the Democrats will cut them off.
I've mentioned my plan for victory before on B5, but there is little chance that the President is going to approach that level resolve and earnestness. I can sum it up with the following new ROE guidance: Don't shoot civilians on purpose and don't be shy about calling in some air if you need it.