Check out this editorial from the the Stratfor Geopolitical Intelligence report of yesterday:
The presidency of George W. Bush is failing.
Love him or hate him, Bush has had the most dramatic international impact of any U.S. president in a generation. But as Bush’s fortunes ebb, his ability to control events in Washington and much further afield are fading as well…
In August…we argued that the United States had achieved the bulk of what it had set out to do in first containing, and then pursuing and dismantling, al Qaeda….
But Iraq has not flowed gently into epilogue, and the final agreements that seemed so tantalizingly close in August remain elusive. In the interim, the American citizenry has grown weary of the conflict — in which the number of American dead has now passed 2100 — and Bush’s popularity has suffered as a result.
But the real inflection point of this presidency was not Iraq; rather, it was Hurricane Katrina. Rightly or wrongly, Bush was perceived not just as unprepared for a major hurricane strike, but also as oblivious to the seriousness of the humanitarian disaster in New Orleans. This perception solidified the opposition of the U.S. left, denied the president any help from the American center and cracked the heretofore unified American right. The result was a president in danger of losing his core supporters, without whom no president can effectively rule. Similar circumstances condemned past statesmen such as Wilson, Truman, Johnson and Nixon into the unenviable company of failed presidents.
Since Katrina, the Bush administration’s fortunes have only slid further, with three critical defeats standing out most glaringly. First, its primary congressional ally, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, has been indicted for fundraising improprieties. Second, the administration’s efforts to shuttle Harriet Miers into the Supreme Court resulted in a break within the Republican Party. Third, the vice president’s chief of staff — Lewis “Scooter” Libby — has been indicted for disclosing the status of undercover intelligence officers to the press, a charge that may well be pressed against political mastermind Karl Rove, and perhaps even the vice president himself.
What this amounts to is that the Bush administration has alienated the Republican Party’s religious wing and those who value national defense above all else. Between that and the loss of DeLay, the president’s star has fallen so far that he can no longer demand meetings with key legislators; he must negotiate for them. His foreign policy agenda is weighed down by the albatross of Iraq, and since congressional Republican leadership is keeping its distance from the president, his legislative agenda has not so much as budged in months.
I couldn’t have said it better myself. Normally Stratfor are imperialist cheerleaders in deep sympathy with PNAC, so for them to abandon the Bush/Cheney war train means the cars are really heading off the tracks.
Delightful. The world can move on to slowly becoming a better place. The heat is on the Americans and those countries in Europe who abetted the CIA in its illegal imprisonment and torture of invisible prisoners within their borders.
Illegal American torture in Europe is front page news in all the newspapers in Austria today. This story has been on the front page most of the last ten days. People are very unhappy about it.
I was out in flex again tonight. “Are you American?” asked the beautiful dancer hesitantly and with vague distaste.
“No, I’m no torturer,” I was happy to be able to answer.