Shake His Hand - And Die
MSNBC image of the now-deceased Sunni sheik Abdul-Sattar Abu Risha
As Senate Democrats continue their efforts to ditch a withdrawal deadline in favor of bipartisan mission change and troop readiness amendments to the annual defense budget, the White House is increasingly confident that after Bush’s speech tonight, they can maintain Bush’s “stay the course” approach for the remainder of his term. Bush will portray his un-doing of the surge next summer and abandonment of 130,000 troops in Iraq to his successor as a chance to unify the country behind Dave Petraeus’ war. Seriously.
Perhaps the White House should rethink that confidence, after word gets out today that the Oil Law is dead, and a major Sunni sheik who shook hands with Bush ten days ago has now been assassinated. Since keeping GOP support requires the White House to bamboozle all of them with visions of Iraqi political reconciliation and improved security, it’s hard to see how these developments bode well for selling ponies to these GOP senators. If we've allegedly been focusing our efforts on Al Qaeda in Iraq, then how did they get so close to this sheik to kill him today?
Is this Bush's idea of improved security in Iraq?