Spencer Ackerman

Spencer Ackerman, a senior correspondent for The American Prospect, is a senior reporter for The Washington Independent.

Recent Articles


BEST UN AMBASSADOR EVER. You don't want to read me on the end of John Bolton's tenure as United Nations ambassador, you want to read Fast Leon. But I had to chuckle when I saw this line in today's AP write-up:

[White House spokeswoman Dana] Perino said that among Bolton's accomplishments, he assembled coalitions addressing North Korea's nuclear activity, Iran's uranium enrichment and reprocessing work and the horrific violence in Darfur.

Yeah, how's all that going? Everything copastetic? Moving in our direction?


GO NOWHERE. Thanks to Tom Ricks, we learn that the Pentagon's Iraq review promises more of the same -- an infusion of an unspecified number of forces for an unspecified period of time to fight the insurgents, and an eventual but unspecific shift in emphasis to the training of Iraqi troops and police. This is called "Go Long," but in reality it's "Go Nowhere." This is exactly what we've been doing for at least a year, plus or minus an Army division.

Permission to Stand Down

Sometime between now and March 15, 2007, everything you know about the Iraq debate will change. It won't be because of any dramatic shift in the fortunes of a disastrous war: If current trends continue, the five coming months offer the escalation of the Iraqi civil war, the 3,000th American service death, and more disgraceful blather from the Bush administration that we're about to turn it all around.


THE WORST OF ALL POSSIBLE WORLDS. As long as TNR is trying to find the pony in Iraq, it's worth observing that the U.S.-sponsored Maliki government has just escalated the civil war tremendously. Maliki has just issued an arrest warrant for Harith al-Dhari, the leader of the most prominent Sunni organization, the Association of Muslim Scholars.


CRUELTY AND SILENCE. The New Republic fired me before it published its Iraq symposium. Oh well -- it had been made clear to me that I wouldn't have been invited to contribute anyway. So now I take up my new role: foul-weather critic of its latest spineless Iraq editorial. (In TNR-speak, a "lede.")