Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Turn, turn, turn

Having noticed that Bush has twice in the last month (on 5/1 and 5/22) hailed developments in Iraqi politics as "turning points" in the war there, I thought I'd try to find out just how many turning points there have been. So I did a couple of quick Lexis searches, restricted to the New York Times and the Washington Post. It turns out that, in addition to turning points, there have also been quite a few "milestones." In particular:

July 2003: formation of temporary governing council is an "important milestone."

June 2004: the handover of sovereignty is a "turning point."

January 2005: Iraqi elections were both a "turning point" and a "milestone."

August 2005 and/or October 2005 (not sure if one date is wrong, or, if both are right, whether they relate to different stages): adoption of Iraqi constitution and/or progress towards adoption thereof were "milestones."

December 2005 - Iraqi parliamentary elections were a "major milestone."

Then most recently we have 5/1/06 and 5/22/06, both involving "turning points" that I believe were not exactly the same.

Wow, things are sure going well out there.


Mark Witte said...

Speaking of turning the corner, when I heard this from Bush at his press conference yesterday, I was given pause.

"And I think the biggest mistake that's happened so far, at least from our country's involvement in Iraq is Abu Ghraib. We've been paying for that for a long period of time. And it's -- unlike Iraq, however, under Saddam, the people who committed those acts were brought to justice. They've been given a fair trial and tried and convicted."

Other than Bush's unique pronounciation of "Abu Ghraib", are those who are held there these days thought to have been convicted in something like fair trails? If so, since when?

Daniel Shaviro said...

I think Bush's claim is that theAmericans guilty of torture at Abu Ghraib were convicted. He ignores, of course, the fact that the prosecutors were careful to go after no one but the rank and file.

Anand Desai said...

Four turning points: isn't that a complete circle?