Saturday, August 18, 2007

Scarecrow Returns to Oz as Dark Storm Clouds Approach from East

The man in search of a brain returned to Oz (otherwise known as Crawford) on Air Force One with Dorothy and Toto in tow. He plans to meet with the Wizard, the man behind the curtain who just announced his retirement as the Scarecrow's Senior White House advisor.

Why does this U.S. leader need a brain? A quick review of his Saturday morning radio address reveals some answers. He said:

"As reconciliation occurs in local communities across Iraq," he said, "it will help create the conditions for reconciliation in Baghdad as well." Bush cited Anbar province, where local sheiks joined U.S. forces in driving out terrorists. Bush said that today, the provincial council in Ramadi is back, and that last month, provincial officials reopened parts of the war-damaged government center with the help of a provincial reconstruction team. "Similar scenes are taking place in other parts of Anbar," the president said. "Virtually every city and town in the province now has a mayor and a functioning municipal council."

What Bush calls reconciliation in Anbar province is but Sunni's driving out domestic al Qaeda types, not reconciliation between Sunni. Shia and Kurds. And why did the local sheiks cut a deal with U.S. forces to use their militias to secure their towns? They want American troops to leave their country, plain and simple.

The President mentioned another Shia town council that pulled together to decide how to spend rebuilding money. In no case did he cite where Sunni and Shia have dropped their 4 year animosity to work on behalf of the greater good.

I found it interesting the President mentioned provincial reconstruction teams. Congressman Mike Conaway said these were only half staffed in his recent open house in San Angelo. And that leads me back to another half assed effort, Bush's albatross, Hurricane Katrina. As her 2007 counterpart Hurricane Dean roars across the Carribean, the Scarecrow might find himself flying back to Washington, D.C. to manage another disaster response. The last one was compounded by his disastrous investigation into his administration's performance. If one can't conduct a competent analysis/investigation, how can they do better next time? Time will tell. I wonder if the Scarecrow packed his guitar? Will he strum again as another city with huge medical complexes floods? Will he serenade stranded patients lucky enough to be alive? Stay tuned!