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Thursday, September 22, 2005

Baghdad: Terror in 30 minutes or your money back?

Fouad Ajami was an early semi-supporter of the war in Iraq. The Middle East expert and professor at John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies wrote in the January/February 2003 issue of Foreign Affairs that the war offered the U.S. a chance to get more deeply involved in the Middle East -- a region the U.S. has long sought not to remake but merely to maintain, in all its autocratic glory. He wasn't convinced, in all fairness, that the effort would work.

Now Ajami is telling his students quite flatly that the war is a failure because the very types of people the U.S. is trying to kill off and marginalize are everywhere and likely growing in number. Religious extremists can be delivered virtually anywhere in Iraq within 30 minutes, and piping hot too.

``In Iraq, ordering a jihadist is as easy as ordering a pizza in America,'' he said, according to one Friend of Cornhuskerblogger (FOCHB) in Ajami's class.

More proof of Iraq-FUBAR, in case you needed any.

Ajami's caveat in 2003 that ``Iraq should not be burdened, however, with the weight of great expectations'' holds more than two years later -- even if Bush's rhetoric shows little signs of changing beneath the groaning weight of reality.

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