I’m asking nicely…

Iraqi interim premier Iyad Allawi suggested that he and the mighty Iraqi military would launch its own operation against the good people of Fallujah if they did not turn over terrorist mastermind al-Zarqawi. Yes, he said at first, he would ask nicely, but not to make him mad, lest he have to go all Shiite on the mostly Sunni population of Fallujah (sight of the dragging of the corpses of four American contract workers last year, and lots of other nasty insurgent activity, and a city largely abandoned to the locals by the American occupation force).
I guess asking nicely is a strategy that hasn’t been tried before.
Look: the war is going badly. Fallujah is just one of many areas in Iraq now beyond the control of the American military or its local clients. The response has been, naturally, to increase raw brutality (floggings will continue until morale improves).
The key word: legitimacy. Allawi, as an agent of the American invaders and occupiers, hasn’t any. As such, his edicts are not going to be particularly persuasive or compelling. Of course, to the extent that his response (to everything) is Saddam-style brutality, why should they be?
Stories of what could be the Iraqi My Lai massacres are starting to emerge. American casualties mount, and yet, both major candidates feel the need to appeal to American bloodthirstiness and invoke visions of “winning”.
Well, I suppose Kerry can end this with “I didn’t get us in there. But I’m going to have to get us out. When you’re at the bottom of a hole, you first have to stop digging. The President’s unbelievable decision to leave the Iraqi nuclear facilities and materials and other potential weapons of mass destruction unguarded tells us all we need to know about his competence to date and the ability of his government to carry forward with anything other than more incompetence leading to disaster. The President hasn’t left us with many good options, so we’ll do the best we can. The faster we can hand a stable Iraq over the Iraqis the better– and that’s what I’m going to have as the aim. The President gets the benefit of our full intelligence and military apparatus– let him tell you what he’s going to do differently. What makes me different from him is that even if I told you what my plan was, if circumstances changed, I would adjust. He won’t”
Not all that satisfying sound bite, but maybe… just maybe… what needs to be said.