"Thomas Mann, the eminent presidential scholar at the Brookings Institution, put it this way last week in an interview with The Hill, the journal on the desks of all members of Congress:
"Republicans have to defend a war that was very badly planned and is costing much more in blood and treasure than the public was led to believe. Democrats struggle to define and agree on alternative policy that doesn't simply write off the sacrifices already made by our armed forces and accept defeat."
In other words, the die has been cast; we have crossed both the Tigris and the Euphrates. But if history is our guide, it will take six more years to declare peace with honor, one more time. As if most of us, Iraqis aside, did not already know that this war is over. We tried the impossible again, with the usual result -- and it will take time to craft a noble rationale for what we have done to ourselves."