PETRAEUS COMETH. ...

PETRAEUS COMETH. Yep, Krugman's a good columnist. Right on Petraeus, too. Reminds me: On Hardball yesterday, part of the plan was to talk about the coming report, and the frame was apparently going to be whether Bush would win on this yet again. Talk of a new bin Laden tape preempted that discussion, but the point I'd wanted to make is that what's said on that program, and others like it, would be the decisive factor. Next week, Petraeus will not be acting as a general and he will not be acting as a soldier; he will be acting as a media campaign. He is the White House's press strategy, and the degree to which the press and the Democrats internalize this will largely dictate how the testimony is received. But make no mistake: No report on violence in Iraq that doesn't count Sunni-on-Sunni killings, Shia-on-Shia combat, carbombings, or people shot in the front -- rather than the back -- of the head, is anything but a press release. Ask yourself: Do you think Iraqis don't count those events as violence?

--Ezra Klein

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