A BAGHDAD QUIZ….Here’s an idle question on a deadly serious subject. Suppose Iraq melts down completely. Baghdad turns into a killing field, a hundred thousand people die, and entire neighborhoods are razed. After a year or two of this, the Kurds have control of Kirkuk and are safe in Kurdistan, the Shiite militias emerge victorious in the rest of the country, and the Sunni population is decimated. There is a government in place, but in reality Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani calls the shots from his rooms in Najaf.

Got that? I’m not saying this is what will happen, I’m just suggesting that it’s a distinct possibility. So here’s the question: if this is how things turn out, what will be the primary conservative storyline to explain what really happened?

  1. Insufficient force and resolve were brought to bear. We should have turned Fallujah into a modern-day Dresden.

  2. The media undermined the war effort. The terrorists knew they only had to wait us out.

  3. Iraqis are still better off than they were under Saddam, and Los Angeles hasn’t been nuked. Liberals don’t understand a victory when they see one in front of their eyes.

  4. We were wrong about the efficacy of force in creating liberal democracies. We’re now sadder but wiser.

Just kidding about that last one, of course. But take your pick of the others. Or add your own!