In Washington Monthly, Joshua Micah Marshall (his stellar weblog: Talking Points Memo) has a sobering look at the neocon view of Baghdad-as-beta for “rolling the table,” i.e., regime changing the entire Middle East. Slate‘s Kaus realizes that this explains Rumsfeld’s hubris and micromanaging (cf. Sy Hersh) a small military footprint–so Baghdad’s fall puts Teheran, Damascus, and Riyadh (!?!) on notice.
One conclusion of Marshall’s article: this neocon war strategy is self-fulfilling prophecy; the more they pursue it, the more “painfully necessary” constant war becomes. “The White House really has in mind an enterprise of a scale, cost, and scope that would be almost impossible to sell to the American public. The White House knows that. So it hasn’t even tried. Instead, it’s focused on getting us into Iraq with the hope of setting off a sequence of events that will draw us inexorably towards the agenda they have in mind.”
Which puts me in a coining mood (Hey, why should Jarvis have all the fun?). The war to begin all wars.