And so it comes to this: like a mad dictator in his bunker moving phantom divisions on a map, or an inbred aristocrat in a chateau securely behind the lines, Bush is planning "a last big push" to win the war in Iraq. He wants to throw another 20,000 men into the meat-grinder in Baghdad in the hope of securing the city while he convenes a conference of Iraq's neighbours (including Iran and Syria) to ensure regional stability and bangs some heads together to force Sh'ia and Sunni to put aside their differences. It's a fantasy, of course - as much of a fantasy as Hitler's final offensive to save Berlin, or Haig's "big push" to break through on the Western Front - but in Bush's faith-based reality, sheer willpower triumphs over roadside bombs and RPG-7s. Little facts like the US not having another 20,000 men, Iran and Syria being happy to watch the "Great Satan" drive itself to hell, and the Sh'ia and Sunni being more interested in advancing their own interests than in securing Bush's legacy just don't seem to register. And so men and women will be sent to their deaths for a delusion, because the President can't admit that he made a mistake and that the war is lost.
There is no point in throwing good lives after bad. There is no point in trying to stop a civil war that started twelve months ago. The best America can do now is to stop inflaming the situation, admit defeat, and go home.