09-20-07 - 2

Jon Stewart's kind of a thick-headed idiot, I'm getting pretty tired of him. He does a good job in his interviews some times, but he's just not super smart (in the sense that he often doesn't seem to grasp what the interviewee is trying to say, and he makes replies that don't really reply to the point the guy was making) and his politics and understanding of the world is not deep. More and more it seems like he uses the interviews to just say his favorite little points, and doesn't really listen to what the other person has to say and doesn't draw out the useful information from them. He's the kind of guy you can't actually have a political discussion with because he will just keep going back to his same points over and over.

Wesley Clark on the show was very impressive. Obviously he's been out of the military and government for a long time now so he has some freedom to be honest that people closer to the shit don't have, but he came out and said the things that are basically true : the counter-insurgency strategy is basically right; the "surge" is just a band-aid that's not gonna do shite long term; to really create peace we would need to send in a ton of troops which we don't have and can't get; even if we could, the American people are now against it; and even then it may be too late in Iraq, or it's way harder anyway, because we've allowed the political situation to get screwed up there.

Of course he didn't get into what he would do now, dunno if that's in the book. His article from late 2005 was a pretty good (and obvious) action list for the time, but it's too late now. The only thing I can see that's workable is partition. Partition sucks for a few reasons, one of which is that Baghdad is not easy to partition, but of course in the last few years it has become much easier to partition. Kurdistan is already nearly independent, and basically the success in Anbar that the administration loves to talk about is really just the Sunnis taking a step towards an independent security force.

We have just enough political will to support a troop presence for a bit longer, and that could be used to help establish the partition and support & train the seperate security forces in each region, and also to enforce peace between the regions. We could help set up a weak federal government with some kind of parliament from the regions and an oil-revenue sharing plan that's built into the constitution. Perhaps the biggest problem with partition is that apparently the Iraqis really don't want it (except for the Kurds).

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