Bush, et al, on Iraq, Three Years In…


Bush, others, in the NY Times:

"I'm encouraged by the progress" [in Iraq, says Bush]….

"It's not just about Iraq, it's not about just today's situation in Iraq," [says Cheney.] "It's about where we're going to be 10 years from now in the Middle East and whether or not there's going to be hope and the development of the governments that are responsive to the will of the people, that are not a threat to anyone, that are not safe havens for terror or manufacturers of weapons of mass destruction."…

"Turning our backs on postwar Iraq today would be the modern equivalent of handing postwar Germany back to the Nazis," [Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld] wrote in an op-ed article published in The Washington Post. "It would be as great a disgrace as if we had asked the liberated nations of Eastern Europe to return to Soviet domination."

"If this is not civil war," [former interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi says], "then God knows what civil war is."…

The war has taken more than 2,300 American lives, and those of 33,000 to 37,000 Iraqis, according to the estimates of the Iraq Body Count Project, an independent group that monitors the news media….When the war was launched, the Pentagon expected a short conflict. Its classified plans called for the withdrawal of the majority of American troops by the fall of 2003. Today there are roughly 133,000 still there.

As of Friday, 2,313 American military personnel and Defense Department civilians had died during the Iraq effort; of those, 1,811 were killed in action and 502 in non-hostile events, like accidents, a Pentagon spokesman said Sunday. The spokesman also cited statistics that 7,912 American military personnel had been wounded so severely in action they could not return to duty, and 9,212 had been wounded in action but could return to duty.

More here.

On Friday, we posted a survey of libertarian journalists, academics, and policy wonks about the war in Iraq. That's online here. Reader comments online here.