Thursday, February 24, 2005

Containing Bush

Sid Blumenthal makes the case that Europe is using this trip to push Bush into a corner on Iran.

Of course, Bush has already contained himself, or at least his preemption doctrine, which seems to have been good for one-time use only. None of the allies is willing to repeat the experience. Even if he wants to, Bush can't manage another such military show because the U.S. Army, pinned down in Iraq, is unavailable. The immediate problem of Iran, in any case, is in many ways the opposite of Iraq. (Iraq is also not the ideologue's Iraq now.) The Europeans have committed their credibility to negotiations, the Iranians have the diplomatic means to preclude unilateral U.S. action, and Bush, who, according to high-level European officials, has no actual policy or sense of what to do, is boxed in whether he understands it or not.

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