Twenty Headless Bodies

Just one more night south of Baghdad. The night before, another twenty bodies were discovered in the streets. Today, a massive bomb targeting Shiites also went off killing at least two score people. According to the WaPo,

Violence dipped for a while after extra troops started arriving in February, but recent data shows that some kinds of attacks and killings are back to January's pre-surge levels.

Without any coherent government, without sectarian reconciliation, this kind of thing will continue in the power vacuum. The U.S. military is doing everything it can, but it cannot perform miracles. In a country where there is no effective central government, and where the Iraqi security forces are captive to various sectarian impulses and restrained only by the patina of American force, bombings and mass murders will continue. We could stay there twenty years and, without a political solution from within, they would continue. The problem in Iraq is not that Washington somehow wants to pull out prematurely. It is that there is no credible scenario for improving matters if we continue to plow on. No time-table can ignore this reality. Without sectarian division, you can have some success. Look at the Kurdish north. With it, you can send young Americans to die in someone else's civil war for decades.