When you start out with this line:
One of the more memorable and revealing statements explaining the nature of the Bush administration buildup to the invasion of Iraq was offered in September 2002 by then White House chief of staff Andrew Card. “From a marketing point of view,” he said, “you don’t introduce new products in August.”
You’re swinging for the fence.
I first saw this over at talking points memo this morning, where Josh Marshal highlighted this passage:
Gen. Petraeus is promised as the dramatic hero who will stride to triumph in the last act. The author of a recent study of counterinsurgency who has not previously fought such a war, he has been thrust into the spotlight partly because his halo is yet untarnished. Bush’s unpopularity disqualifies him from the “Mission Accomplished” moment. So he pushes out his handpicked general and walks behind his chariot, hoping the cheering of the crowd will be also for him. In his July 12 press conference, Bush mentioned Petraeus 11 times, his name flourished as a talisman for “victory.” The generals with the greatest experience with the Iraq insurgency, who opposed Bush’s surge, such as Gen. John Abizaid, an Arabic speaker, have been discharged or reassigned. The burden on the ambitious general to produce a military solution is unbearable and his breaking inevitable. But for now, Petraeus’ tragedy foretold is being cast as the first dawn of a happy ending.
The full piece is at salon.com.
And it’s worth your time.by