My favorite bit in the newly unveiled National Strategy for Victory in Iraq aka Plan for Victory, is not that it is three years too late; not that there is no Arabic translation of this Plan available; not that the whole endeavor is regressive; not that there are cute checkmarks next to lines such as "As the terrorists themselves recognize..."; not that the words 'Islam', 'Muslim', or 'Rumsfeld' do not occur anywhere [or "Enemies of the legitimate Iraqi government"]; not that we learn that there are 3 million cell phones in Iraq today when a June 2004 DoC report put the number at 315,000 [million likely but I nitpick]; not that there are eighteen core assumptions ranging from the sappy "like people in all parts of the world, from all cultures and religions, when given the opportunity, the Iraqi people prefer to live in freedom rather than under tyranny" to the scary "regional meddling and infiltrations can be contained and/or neutralized"; no, my favorite bit lies among the quotes at the end of each Strategic Pillar:
Strategic Pillar Six, "One of the most important ways to fight terrorism is to promote democracy, and one of the most important ways to promote democracy is the rule of law.â€šÃ„Ã¹ - Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, July 2005. That's rich, no? [pdf].
Wrote David Denby at the end of his Syriana review in this week's NYer: "...the taste of freedom has turned to wormwood and gall."