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Lost in the Fog With Commander Guy

In Tipp City, just before his reminder about the Oval Office rug, Bush said success in Iraq would be defined as "a country that is stable enough for the government to work, that can defend itself and serve as an ally in this war on terror, that won't be a safe haven, that will deny the extremists and the radicals."

But that doesn't necessarily mean an end to bloody suicide bombings, he added. "Think about that: If our definition is no more suiciders, you've just basically said to the suiciders, go ahead."

Speaking to the contractors' group Wednesday, the president elaborated: "Either we'll succeed or we won't succeed. And the definition of success as I described is sectarian violence down. Success is not, no violence. There are parts of our own country that have got a certain level of violence to it. But success is a level of violence where the people feel comfortable about living their daily lives. And that's what we're trying to achieve."

What is the man talking about? What "parts of our own country" experience violence remotely comparable to that in Iraq? Is he serious?

President Bush now says that even after "success" in Iraq -- after more American and Iraqi deaths -- there will still be sectarian violence and there will still be suicide bombers killing innocent civilians. Which is the situation right now. So why stay in Iraq even one more day, except to validate the unwise decisions of our ineloquent Commander Guy?

eugenerobinson@washpost.com


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