Josh Marshall writes that "the occupation itself is the cause of the unrest and violence in [Iraq]." I think that's partially true, but more importantly, the occupation is thwarting any resolution of the conflict. Civil wars end when one side knows it has lost. As long as we are in Iraq the insurgency will not know that it has lost. Both Republicans and Democrats say they want the U.S. leave -- Iraqis realize that the occupation isn't forever. Until the U.S. has left, hope will still live in the hearts of the Sunni fighters. The Iraqi government, already cheated of sovereign legitimacy, will not be able to establish its own credibility of force.
It's Catch-22, Iraqi-style. The U.S. can’t leave Iraq until its government can stand by itself. The Iraqi government can’t stand by itself while the U.S. is propping it up.
UPDATE: Check the link... Josh has kindly posted my response to him.