The good news is that all of Iraq could and did celebrate the victory of its truly national football/soccer team in the Asian Cup. As picked up by Drudge, the sobering news comes from the team’s captain, who says he won’t return to Iraq to celebrate because he’s afraid he’ll be killed — and that he wants the U.S. to withdraw from his country “today, tomorrow, or the day after tomorrow.” He also said he wishes the U.S. had never invaded. No wonder we haven’t heard a lot of Administration officials out there trumpeting the celebration of the win as a sign of hope.
UPDATE: A commenter writes: “Hold on — he obviously hasn’t read Pollack and O’Hanlon yet.” Actually, I had read Pollack and O’Hanlon. But they’re not admin officials, and they cited evidence supposedly more concrete than shared Shia/Sunni euphoria over a soccer victory. But — I take your point. Stories saying we’re finally turning a corner — like the ones insisting the next sixth months are critical — should be read with immense doses of skepticism.