PEACE BY AUGUST?….In the middle of a good story about the bipartisan opposition to President Bush’s surge plan, the Washington Post tells us that Bush hopes violence in Baghdad can be tamped down soon:

If that happens, the White House hopes the troop buildup then will succeed in bringing enough stability to Baghdad by August that U.S. forces can withdraw to the city outskirts. And officials said it must be sustained. “By the end of the year, Baghdad’s got to look significantly different,” said a National Security Council official not authorized to speak on the record.

It’s absurd to think that Bush’s new strategy is going to stabilize Baghdad so quickly and thoroughly that we can get our troops out by August. If that’s truly what he thinks, then Bush is either (a) even more deluded than I thought or (b) even more cynical than I thought. Maybe both.