Lee Smith’s piece, “The Shia Problem,” is important. Smith organizes a big-picture look at the Middle East around an emerging, region-wide Sunni-Shia civil war. (A prospect alluded to at the Gates hearing.) Our real interests in that civil war are on the Sunni side, which is a big reason why a deal with Iran is probably a bad idea.
This sounds great to me. No deal with Iran! Can we cut a deal with Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein to form a grand Sunni Islamist / American / Arab nationalist alignment against the rising tide of Shiism. Maybe now that Don Rumsfeld doesn’t have a day job he’d like to orchestrate another sit-down with Saddam. Dunno who we can send as our envoy to OBL, but no doubt if Bush could call Musharraf and Musharraf can call someone in the ISI who knows how to get in touch with Osama.