Armchair General

One of the benefits of being a Bush supporter/admirer/cheerleader has been the opportunity to be an armchair general. Making pronouncements like “let’s invade Iraq and convert them all to Christianity” or opining about how best to deploy troops some troops (“we really should be holding ground in Falluja”) seems to be a lot of fun, especially since those who have played this game have been able to ignore all the inconvenient facts until recently.

Let us, this one time, play this game that the supporters and admirers and cheerleaders have been having so much fun with, but without ignoring the hard facts and the realities. If you work for the general staff, your boss just told you the President wants to win this thing (whatever that means), and you’re getting 20,000 more troops to do it. Nobody has any idea of what to do – if they had, they’d have done it already. So they tell you to think out of the box – they want you to come up with the plan that nobody has thought of yet, but that has a reasonable shot at, if not achieving the President’s ill-defined goals, at least of making things a bit better. What can you do with the existing troop levels plus 20K to at least make the situation better? (Assume you can’t turn down the troops, you can’t resign, and you can’t pull off anything outside the realm of likelihood like making Sadr into a Southern Baptist.)