In the upcoming issue of The New Yorker
, George Packer surveys
the failure of the surge:
The Petraeus-Crocker testimony is the kind of short-lived event on which the Administration has relied to shore up support for the war: the âMission Accomplishedâ declaration, the deaths of Uday and Qusay Hussein, Saddamâs capture, the transfer of sovereignty, the three rounds of voting, the Plan for Victory, the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Every new milestone, however illusory, allows the Administration to avoid thinking ahead, to the years when the mistakes of Iraq will continue to haunt the U.S.
The media have largely followed the Administrationâs myopic approach to the war, and there is likely to be intense coverage of the congressional testimony. But the inadequacy of the surge is already clear, if one honestly assesses the daily lives of Iraqis. . . .
The balance of the piece looks at the road ahead and the very difficult decisions that the U.S. is avoiding making and has been avoiding for many months. If our options before ranged from bad to worse, they now range from worse to horrible.