A BROADER WAR?….Both Tacitus and Josh Marshall are musing over the possibility of what happens if we don’t win a quick victory in Baghdad. Is there any chance that this would lift the spirits of Iraq’s neighbors and cause them to come to Iraq’s defense? Would Syrian and Iranian irregulars start streaming over the border to launch guerrilla attacks on U.S. forces? Is it possible that either country would actually join the war and commit significant numbers of regular troops?

Probably not, for a variety of reasons. But it’s got to be something keeping the generals up at night. As dominating as our military is, we couldn’t win a war if it involved three or four Middle Eastern countries instead of one.

Of course, there’s a flip side to this musing as well: if it actually looked like the U.S. and Britain were in serious trouble, who would come to help us? The French and German and Russians might have opposed this war, but I wonder if they’d really like to see the U.S. defeated or stalemated? That might scare them every bit as much as their fear of American hegemony.

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