Poisoning the waters

Jonathan Rauch of the National Journal discusses the confluence of fallacies and biases that has caused the media and other critics to portray postwar Iraq as “not just a disaster in the making [but] a disaster already made.” All of the factors Rauch cites may be at work, but the single most persuasive explanation has to be “the fact that a lot of people — some Europeans, some doves, some partisans — want President Bush or America or both to fail.” Rauch argues that the 2004 election could not be better timed because, by November 2004, Americans will know a lot more about the real outcome in Iraq. He thereby discounts the possibility (Rocket Man might say probability or even near certainty) that the outrageous rush to judgment that he condemns will contaminate perceptions a year from now.

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