For Success in Iraq, Change Course

An Op-Ed from Senator Biden appears in the Washington Post today calling on the Bush Administration to fundamentally change course in Iraq to salvage the situation.

The Bush administration’s mishandling of Iraq has brought us to the brink of a national security debacle. To salvage the situation, the administration must fundamentally change course inside Iraq, in the region and at the international level.

Stabilizing Iraq is a political as well as a military challenge. The administration is taking a huge gamble by going forward with a referendum for a constitution that is more likely to divide Iraq than to unite it.

A majority of Sunni Arabs are likely to vote against the constitution, but not the two-thirds needed to defeat it. That will further embitter them.

The consequences for U.S. interests could be devastating. Sectarian violence might escalate into a full-blown civil war, drawing in Syria, Iran and Turkey and turning Iraq into a new Lebanon. Even worse, Iraqi Sunnis could forge stronger alliances with foreign jihadists, turning a swath of Iraq into a pre-Sept. 11 Afghanistan for a new generation of terrorists.

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