I truly hope, as Phil does, that the good news continues, and wholeheartedly greet positive developments from the surge, but I also have to say that I stood not far from that mosque in Samarra a month before it was blown up and was told very similar thing about fantastic reductions in violence and a new leaf being turned over with the residents. (Although Samarra was the first place I was called infidel in a non-ironic way.) Samarra was going to be the model, and, believe me, I saw first hand some of the amazing humanitarian projects undertaken by U.S. soldiers at great risk to themselves in an attempt to cement those gains. My take-away from the whole tragic episode–and tragedy is the only fitting term when I think of the Iraqi children I met living under such chaotic and despicable circumstance–is that al Qaeda and the violent sepratist sects that have a vital interest in maintaining disorder are never more dangerous than when things are getting better. They watch the news, too, and strike accordingly. This time seems different. Caution, however, remains a useful refrain.
Notice to Readers: The American Spectator and Spectator World are marks used by independent publishing companies that are not affiliated in any way. If you are looking for The Spectator World please click on the following link: https://spectatorworld.com/.