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Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Quote du jour

As a general rule, it's a bad idea to call a news conference if you have nothing to say. It's worse if you announce that answers are urgently needed but then decline to provide any.
-- Washington Post reporter Dana Milbank, describing yesterday's "briefing" by the co-chairmen of the Iraq Study Group, James "#$%@!@#$#" Baker and Lee "%$##%$#@@" Hamilton. These imperial jokers have been "working" since March to come up with solutions to Bush Quagmire Two. So how's it going?
"We're not going to speculate with you today about recommendations," Baker announced at the session, hosted by the U.S. Institute of Peace.

Can the war in Iraq be won?

"We're not going to make any assessments today about what we think the status of the situation is in Iraq," said Hamilton.

Could they at least explain their definitions of success and failure in Iraq?

"We're not going to get into that today," Baker replied.

After more such probing, Hamilton became categorical. "We've made no judgment of any kind at this point about any aspect of policy with regard to Iraq."
"The next three months are critical," Hamilton warned at the start. "Before the end of this year, this [Iraqi] government needs to show progress in securing Baghdad, pursuing national reconciliation and delivering basic services."

But no matter how urgent the situation in Iraq, the solutions will have to wait at least until Nov. 8 -- and possibly much later -- because of a more urgent consideration: domestic politics. We're "going to report after the midterm election," Baker announced.

Bill Jones of Executive Intelligence Review asked the obvious question. "The situation in Iraq seems to be degenerating from day to day" and may not be a "salvageable situation" by November, he said. "Shouldn't the urgency be propelled by developments in Iraq rather than the calendar here?"

Baker didn't think so. "We think it's more important, frankly, to make sure whatever we bring forward is taken, to the extent that we can take it, out of domestic politics," he said.
Because, frankly, they don't give a flying Cheney about the thousands of Iraqis who will die between now and then.

On the other hand, the less we hear from James "#$%@!@#$#" Baker, the better.

Milbank clearly deserves a Pulitzer for this one--providing a suitably mocking tone when reporting on two jokers who richly deserve to be mocked. Milbank even (gasp!) checks what the jokers said yesterday against what they said before:
Baker, a troubleshooter for President Bush, said "We have said from Day One that we were going to report after the midterm election." In fact, Baker said on Day One -- the commission's launch on March 15, 2006 -- that "we have not set a time frame" and that "we may come forward with some interim reports."