Worst-Case Scenarios in Iraq, and Solutions

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President Bush rules out all strategic options in Iraq that he says would lead to defeat. He speaks of success. The Iraq Study Group calls the situation grave and deteriorating, but makes dozens of recommendations to accomplish the mission: to leave Iraq as a country that can govern, sustain and defend itself.

Much of what we hear about Iraq these days is "best-case" thinking. But what if it the militias aren't reined in? What if a political bargain between Sunni and Shia isn't struck? What if things don't come together, but continue to fall apart, instead?

Robert Siegel talks with several people about what the worst-case scenario might be for Iraq — and how U.S. policy should respond.

Shibley Telhami is with the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution and the University of Maryland. Kenneth Adelman was the assistant to Defense Secretary Rumsfeld from 1975 to 1977; he later served as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, in addition to being the director for arms control under President Reagan.

Leslie Gelb is President Emeritus and Board Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

And Jessica Tuchman Mathews is president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.



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