The latest major poll of Iraqis makes a very sobering counter-point to the guarded optimism of Petraeus and Crocker - and it's instructive to compare the latest results from earlier this year. How do Iraqis view the invasion? In February 2007, at the beginning of the surge, 47 percent defended the invasion; now that's down to 37 percent. The percentage who believed the invasion was somewhat or absolutely wrong in February was 53 percent; now it's 63 percent. There is a slight decline in the number of Iraqis believing that the security situation is good or very good. 61 percent of Iraqis say that the security situation has deteriorated since March. As for their own neighborhoods, 24 percent say things are more secure; 31 percent say things have gotten worse; and 45 percent report no change. 72 percent believe US troops are making the security situation worse. 92 percent of Sunni Arab Iraqis see attacks on US forces as acceptable, compared with 50 percent of the Shia. I don't see progress in these self-reported findings. Worse: the vast majority want Iraq to remain as one country. They just differ over who should run it.
(Photo: Roslan Rahman/AFP/Getty.)