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Four Color Politics

Mainly the Quotes of the Morning, with occasional Other Crap.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Quotes of the Morning: Just a Firedman to Go

“I’m back… Did you miss me? Did we achieve peace in Iraq while I was gone?”

"The US general in charge of the multinational coalition in Iraq, General George Casey, said that the next six months will be a decisive period that will determine Iraq's future."
-AFP. October 5, 2006

‘Apparently not, though it seems that we are hitting a critical period in Iraq’s future. Six months? Sounds like a nice indefinite period of time. In fact, I think I’ve heard that before..”

“With U.S. military withdrawal likely to begin next year, the future of Iraq rests in the hands of its own people, Sen. Chuck Hagel said Wednesday. ‘The next six months will really tell the story,’ he told a Lincoln Chamber of Commerce luncheon audience.”
-Lincoln Journal Star, August 18, 2006

“Progress is mixed, but the most important thing that I noticed when I was in Baghdad was the determination of the elected officials, the Iraqi people and of our troops. The next six months are vital.”
-Representative Tom Cole (R-OK), August 7, 2006

“Speaking to the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City Friday, Zebari said Zarqawi's death and the now-completed Iraqi cabinet represent ‘a new beginning for the country.’

Zebari, a former member of the Kurdish national resistance campaign against Saddam Hussein, admitted it will take some time for the new government to establish itself. But, he said, the next six months are ‘of crucial importance.’"
-Forbes, June 16, 2006

“The next six months will be critical in terms of reining in the danger of civil war. If the government fails to achieve this, it will have lost its opportunity.”
US Ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad, June 7, 2006

“The U.S. ambassador said Sunday that Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki will have no honeymoon and will be immediately challenged by al-Qaida and other terrorists.
In an interview with the Associated Press one day after the seating of the new leadership, U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad outlined the immediate challenges facing the government of national unity and said the next six months will be ‘truly critical.’"
-Associated Press, May 22, 2006

“Wow.. Apparently ‘six months’ has been a critical period for at least the last.. um.. six months. Has anyone else noticed this?”

“Here's an Iraq war math problem: What do you get by adding ‘timetable for pulling our troops out’ to ‘staying as long as it takes?’ To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure how anyone would make such a calculation. But if you guessed the answer is six months, you'd be in agreement with a number of high-ranking officials.
The six-month time frame is like a political pressure-release valve that helps keep public debate about US policy from building up to explosive levels. The first example I noticed was in a Reuters news story Nov. 28, 2005. Virginia Sen. John Warner (R) had just appeared on a TV talk show and was quoted as saying, ‘We have got to stay firm for the next six months. It is a critical period ... in this Iraqi situation, to restore full sovereignty in that country.’
A few paragraphs later, a quote appeared from Delaware Sen. Joe Biden (D), who had also been interviewed on TV. Senator Biden said he didn't believe the war was lost but added, ‘I think we have a six-month window here to get it right. But I have to admit that I think the chances are not a lot better than 50-50.’"
-Jeffrey Shaffer, Christian Science Monitor, July 28, 2006

“Ok. I guess some people have noticed. In the realm of the eternal ‘soon’ one name stands out though. A man who has been roundly mocked on the internet for a while now for his perpetual view that six months from now will make a difference. A man for whom the time span of six months has been renamed: Thomas Friedman (as the blog Eschaton has noted and has widely spread.. six months is now to be referred to as one ‘Friedman’.)”

"The next six months in Iraq—which will determine the prospects for democracy-building there—are the most important six months in U.S. foreign policy in a long, long time."

-Thomas Friedman, November 30, 2003

"What I absolutely don't understand is just at the moment when we finally have a UN-approved Iraqi-caretaker government made up of—I know a lot of these guys—reasonably decent people and more than reasonably decent people, everyone wants to declare it's over. I don't get it. It might be over in a week, it might be over in a month, it might be over in six months, but what's the rush? Can we let this play out, please?"

-Thomas Friedman, June 3, 2004

"What we're gonna find out, Bob, in the next six to nine months is whether we have liberated a country or uncorked a civil war."

-Thomas Friedman, October 3, 2004

"I think we're in the end game now…. I think we're in a six-month window here where it's going to become very clear and this is all going to pre-empt I think the next congressional election—that's my own feeling— let alone the presidential one."

-Thomas Friedman, September 25, 2005

"We've teed up this situation for Iraqis, and I think the next six months really are going to determine whether this country is going to collapse into three parts or more or whether it's going to come together."

-Thomas Friedman, December 18, 2005

"We're at the beginning of I think the decisive I would say six months in Iraq, OK, because I feel like this election—you know, I felt from the beginning Iraq was going to be ultimately, Charlie, what Iraqis make of it."

-Thomas Friedman, December 20, 2005

"The only thing I am certain of is that in the wake of this election, Iraq will be what Iraqis make of it—and the next six months will tell us a lot. I remain guardedly hopeful."

-Thomas Friedman, December 21, 2005

"I think that we're going to know after six to nine months whether this project has any chance of succeeding. In which case, I think the American people as a whole will want to play it out or whether it really is a fool's errand."

-Thomas Friedman, January 23, 2006

"I think we're in the end game there, in the next three to six months, Bob. We've got for the first time an Iraqi government elected on the basis of an Iraqi constitution. Either they're going to produce the kind of inclusive consensual government that we aspire to in the near term, in which case America will stick with it, or they're not, in which case I think the bottom's going to fall out."
-Thomas Friedman, January 31, 2006

"I think we are in the end game. The next six to nine months are going to tell whether we can produce a decent outcome in Iraq."
-Thomas Friedman, March 2, 2006

"Well, I think that we're going to find out, Chris, in the next year to six months—probably sooner—whether a decent outcome is possible there, and I think we're going to have to just let this play out."

-Thomas Friedman, May 11, 2006

“Just remember.. You don’t have to promise anything if you can just wait a Friedman or two to see how things work out.”


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