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January 5th was the bloodiest day in Iraq since Bush's illegal invasion. As many as 140 were killed, including 11 US servicemen, and many more injured. Bush responded by suddenly summoning all living secretaries of state and defense to the White House for a skull session and photo op on what to do in the Middle East before he is completely overtaken by even more catastrophic success. He's willing to share the glory, and said he would "listen and take to heart" any suggestions offered, even from Democrats.

Except an exit plan, of course, and any suggestions of how to better equip or protect the "troops" who are thrown into an exploding nightmare where it's every man for himself. Good luck, soldier. Get out there and make us proud that you died for a noble cause...

Those of us who know Bush is raving mad, destructively impulsive and totally incompetent suspect he was lining up former heavyweights to take the blame when the melt-down comes. The good news is this is Alexander Haig's last chance to be "in charge."

Haig will probably jump at it, even though he knows that he and his renowned counterparts are being set up as "patsies" for Bush's great madcap adventure in Iraq. This mess is so big, it's going to take more than a "few bad apples" to cover it up. I can just hear Bush now -- "I asked them what we should do, and they all agreed that I was doing a heckuva job, and we should stay the course. Don't blame me. They had the same information I had..."

This "meeting" was nothing but another PR trick in Bush's announced campaign to whip the public back into line behind his "strategery" for winning the war and to con people into believing he plans to eventually bring what is left of our ground troops home. As soon as the cameras were turned off, the meeting was over and Bush, Rice, Cheney and Rumsfeld fled, leaving the former VIPs to find their own way out. It was a pitiful sight, and I can't help thinking it served them right for allowing themselves to be used in such a shoddy way.

But the media loved it. Associated Press writer Jennifer Loven crowed, "He (Bush) gambled that one-time high-level public officials, when personally summoned by the president, would resist temptation to be too critical. He was right." Loven assured us that Bush got support for his mission -- along with a few concerns -- and the right to claim that he was "reaching out."

Yeah. This guy is a real uniter, not a divider.

In his statement to the media, Bush said, "Not everybody around this table agreed with my decision to go into Iraq. I fully understand that. But these are good solid Americans who understand that we've got to succeed now that we're there. I'm most grateful for the suggestions they've given."

One "constructive idea" the secretaries broached, according to the White House, was to make sure that the military, not politicians in Washington, are determining troop levels in Iraq and making other on-the-ground calls.

Does anybody doubt that the secretary who came up with this bleak plan was none other than Donald Rumsfeld himself? Which, of course, means that it's business as usual, and the troops won't begin to come home until Rumsfeld says they can...

Meanwhile, the Green Zone in Baghdad finally has all the theaters, restaurants, hotels, swimming pools and golf courses it needs, so Bush is cutting off the promised reconstruction money for Iraq.

Except, of course, for the new billion-dollar embassy that will be more secure than the Pentagon. According to the UK Mirror, "The embassy will be guarded by 15ft blast walls and ground-to-air missiles and the main building will have bunkers for use during air offensives."

It gets better. "The grounds will include as many as 300 houses for consular and military officials. And a large-scale barracks will be built for Marines who will protect what will be Washington's biggest and most secure overseas building."

The source also said that the Bush administration has plans for four super bases across the country.

It doesn't matter if the crusty old New World Order patsies knew Bush has no intention of leaving Iraq until the last drop of oil is sucked from the region when they wandered out of the White House. Bush doesn't care what they think, so it also doesn't matter whether they advised against it if they did know.

That old adage must be true -- when you're in as deep as every single one of them is -- you can't go home again.

Mission Accomplished.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.

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