Don’t miss Blake Hounshell on why the surge is beside the point because Iraq is just an extremely poor candidate country for the kind of maximalist goals that Bush and McCain cite in defense of the endeavor:
We must not forget that even a perfect surge would still have left the United States chasing an expected strategic payoff—a stable, democratic Iraq—that is extremely unlikely to be realized for decades, if at all. It’s one thing to ask American soldiers to lay their lives on the line for freedom and democracy, or to safeguard their country from weapons of mass destruction. But who wants to be the last man to die for Nuri al-Maliki?
I certainly don’t. And while the unfortunate reality is that more Americans certainly will die in this dubious cause I’d like to see that number brought as low as possible through a speedy withdrawal of our forces.