Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Baker: Iraq a "helluva mess"

I respect James Baker and his opinion, so I read the article with great interest. From Breitbart:
Former US secretary of state James Baker was visibly shocked when he last visited Iraq, and said the country was in a "helluva mess", the BBC reported.
Baker is leading a review of the situation in Iraq by a bipartisan US committee of experts, and is expected to recommend a change in US strategy for rebuilding Iraq.

Citing a unnamed close friend and ally of Baker's, himself a top politician, the BBC said that Baker added that "there simply weren't any easy solutions".

Baker was secretary of state to US President George W. Bush's father, president George H. W. Bush.

Citing unnamed members of Baker's committee, The Los Angeles Times on Monday said that two options under consideration would represent reversals of US policy: withdrawing American troops in phases, and bringing neighboring Iran and Syria into a joint effort to stop the fighting.

The BBC also reported that a third possibility was under consideration -- to concentrate on getting stability in Iraq, and stop aiming to establish a democracy there.

The 10-member commission has agreed that change must be made, the Times report said.

"It's not going to be 'stay the course,'" the paper quoted one participant as saying. "The bottom line is, (current policy) isn't working. There's got to be another way."
At the risk of incurring the wrath of my more conservative friends here, I must concur with Baker. I don't think the current policy in Iraq is working, and I think we should explore other ways.

Before you guys flame me, allow me to unequivocally state that I don't think the Murtha approach (cut-and-run and set up shop in Okinawa for a quick strike...5k miles away>?) is an option. Neither is the hippies' approach of "bring them all home now." I'm not fond of Baker's idea to bring Iran and Syria into the situation, considering they're contributing to the mess. However, as Baker admits, there are no easy solutions, and unlike most Dem politicians, he at least has some ideas that we can discuss and debate.

So, what do you think? Is Baker on to something, or is he on something (crack, heroine, etc.)?