Why Does the Iraq Study Group Even Exist?

| Thu Nov. 30, 2006 2:26 PM EST

Word is out on what James Baker's Iraq Study Group is going to recommend: in short, a slow withdrawal of troops tied to no definite timetable, and a transition to a supporting role in the region.

But, hey, that's not what President Bush wants to hear, so even though the actual report isn't out yet, George gave the group a big middle finger today, all the way from his meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister and walking catastrophe Nouri al-Maliki. "I know there's a lot of speculation that these reports in Washington mean there's going to be some kind of graceful exit out of Iraq," said Bush. "We're going to stay in Iraq to get the job done, so long as the government wants us there."

Oh, I get it. So the only acceptable recommendation from the Iraq Study Group was "stay the course," a phrase and mindset the Administration (apparently fictitiously) abandoned a few weeks back. For all the talk about Bush Sr.'s advisors coming the rescue, you just can't beat George W. Bush's old fashioned hubris, obstinancy, and bull-headedness.

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