Our patience has been rewarded with a return to confusion. How can the average citizen know what is going on in Iraq enough to make a sound judgment? The President and his men are saying many positive things which, if true, would make a reasonable person pause. But they have said so much to us that turned out false. Reasonable people have a right to be skeptical. And yet the power and influence of the administration spokespeople makes it hard to believe those in political opposition have a good clear story either. I’d say we have every right to be confused.
This is where we come to then, in America. At each critical juncture in this war, we have found ourselves—average citizens, working every day, seeking to do the right thing, and reasonably and rationally thinking about the problem in Iraq—with conflicting and confusing information. The cause of the confusion will be the source of commentary and speculation. For me, it is part of the tragedy that has erupted in our democracy—that somewhere there is misinformation, which prevents the congealing of consensus at exactly the point where we need it. Because we have confusion, because we have name-calling, because we have division over what is real, we do not have a policy the country supports. Although Iraq engenders many, many tragic events, this is the tragedy of Iraq for us as a nation.