I've taken several days to absorb the impact of Bush's announcement to send another 21,000 or so troops to Iraq. Not that it wasn't pretty much predictable: most Democrats oppose it and some Republicans, tired of having the US weighed down in what seems like a futile effort, are sick of it, too.
Haven't heard any other solutions, though, that seem particularly practical. But, again, that was largely predictable.
One thing that always astonishes me is that the will to win wars is so vastly under-rated. I really wish someone could explain this to me.
It isn't about military might. The US has the people, the equipment and the training to do the job. It isn't about the soldiers; they're doing their jobs. It's about the politics and the way things are presented to the public. There have been numerous instances in Iraq where the US has had an opportunity to really put the sledgehammer down on the terrorist elements trying to split the country apart and have not done so for, more or less, PR reasons. Unfortunately, good PR at home (oh, look, we were nice, we dropped leaflets and let some terrorists run away and others negotiate) is very bad PR amongst the islamists (oh, look, those Americans don't have the balls to really come after us if we hide behind some civilians or hole up in a mosque).
Some of those people, Moqtada al-Sadr in particular, have gone on to greater and greater influence and ability to create havoc.
This is going to be the US's last chance to stabilize the situation. They have to get tough with the Iraqi government, with the terrorist leaders and with warnings to Syria and Iran to stop interfering.
If they don't, all the fine soldiers in the world aren't going to be able to control the situation.