As you'll recall, when the "surge" was announced in January, its stated purpose was to create the conditions for progress toward the goal of national reconciliation. We were promised a report in September on the surge's results. What we got in September was a very, very, very quiet admission that, in terms of its stated goals, the surge had completely and utterly failed. This combined with a loud insistence that the surge was succeeding in terms of some other goals, and that reconciliation was around the corner so why do you hate the troops and want al-Qaediranians to kill little children?

Now we read this morning that top Iraqi politicians want to abandon national reconciliation as a goal. They're not missing benchmarks or running behind schedule, they're just saying it's not going to happen. The surge hasn't worked, isn't working, and won't, according to Iraqis, ever work.

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