ACCOUNTABILITY….Robert Farley notes a sudden conservative enthusiasm for arguments that our men and women in Iraq have been hamstrung by rules of engagement that are too strict:

Why is this suddenly so popular? The argument carries a lot of wingnut water. First, it emphasizes that the problem in Iraq is that we’ve been too soft, and suggests that a more hard-line, brutal approach would put the natives in line. Second, it places implicit blame for the problem not on the people who actually designed the rules (the Army, Marine Corps, DOD, and the Bush Administration), but on those who we already know are soft and weak and don’t care about American soldiers. Thus, the problem is defined as “Politically Correct Rules of Engagement”, suggesting that the villains are likely liberals, Clintonistas, UN-niks, etc. Third, it allows wingnuts to express concern for the well being of the troops in the field, while ignoring the fact that the troops would be much, much safer if they weren’t in Iraq, regardless of the ROE.

Sounds about right. One way or another, conservatives are going to find a way to blame the Iraq disaster on liberals. I imagine they’ll keep floating one theory after another until they finally find one that sticks.