Let's do a flashback to our friend Tom in 2003: Hey, everybody, I've got a great idea! Let's invade Iraq!
The president's view is that in the absence of a U.N. endorsement, this war will become ''self-legitimating'' when the world sees most Iraqis greet U.S. troops as liberators. I think there is a good chance that will play out.From March 19, 2003. Friedman had many weaselly qualifications, but his ultimate point throughout 2002 and 2003 remained the same (blow up Iraq).
But he's flexible. And he's always coming up with great new ideas. Here's his latest new idea: let's get the hell out of Iraq -- which (happy coincidence!) will leave us freer to blow up Iran!
But getting out [of Iraq] has at least four advantages. First, no more Americans will be dying while refereeing a civil war. Second, the fear of an all-out civil war, as we do prepare to leave, may be the last best hope for getting the Iraqis to reach an 11th-hour political agreement. Third, as the civil war in Iraq plays out, it could, painfully, force the realignment of communities on the ground that may create a more stable foundation upon which to build a federal settlement.From July 11, 2007. We should definitely listen to Friedman on Iraq and Iran, because, you know, he's always just so right about these things. And heck, if Iran doesn't work out, we can pull out of there and invade Pakistan in a few years after the crazies finally get Musharraf. Hooray!
Fourth, we will restore our deterrence with Iran. Tehran will no longer be able to bleed us through its proxies in Iraq, and we will be much freer to hit Iran — should we ever need to — once we’re out.