Bad Iraq Predictions

by | Feb 13, 2007 | Stress Blog | 3 comments

Excerpt from Gregg Easterbrook’s Page 2 column for ESPN today “Another Season of Bad Predictions:”

Bad Iraq Predictions: “I predict Iraq won’t have a civil war, that it will have a viable constitution, and that a majority of Iraqis and Americans will, in two years time, agree the war was worth it.” — Jonah Goldberg in the National Review Online in 2005. The media watchdog group FAIR points out that Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, a prominent advocate of the United States invasion of Iraq, since 2003 has predicted on at least nine occasions that the Iraq situation would be resolved in less than a year. “I think that we’re going to know after six to nine months whether this project [the Iraq war] has any chance of succeeding,” Friedman told Oprah Winfrey in January 2006. “The next six to nine months are going to tell whether we can produce a decent outcome in Iraq,” Friedman said on the “Today Show” in March 2006. So Iraq is must be resolved now, right? Friedman in late November 2006: It will be “either 10 months or 10 years” before the Iraq situation is settled. And why has the United States involvement in Iraq gone so badly? Friedman in November 2006: “Iraq was already pretty broken before we got there — broken, it seems, by 1,000 years of Arab-Muslim authoritarianism, three brutal decades of Sunni Baathist rule and a crippling decade of United Nations sanctions. It was held together only by Saddam’s iron fist. Had we properly occupied the country and begun political therapy, it is possible an American iron fist could have held Iraq together long enough to put it on a new course.” So how come Friedman didn’t tell us this before thousands died?

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