In a question-and-answer period after his speech, Rove was asked whose idea it was to start a pre-emptive war in Iraq."I wish the war were over," Rove said. "I wish the war never existed... History has given us a challenge."I've never agreed with Karl Rove more. I've said before that through the War in Iraq we've substantially accomplished bin Laden's strategic goals and ensured his relevance through boosted recruitment and cultural momentum. Rather than pursuing a global counterinsurgency, wherein the extremist elements are leveraged away from the surrounding population, thereby decreasing its support base and withering the movement to death, we pursued an ever-escalating regional conflict where we are increasingly seen as at War with Islam.
"I think it was Osama bin Laden’s," Rove replied.
Picking the ground over which to fight is the concern of the engagement's commander. Generals plan campaigns, Colonels handle regions, Majors execute operations, and in every context the ground over which you will be fighting is critical to determining the outcome. Prepositioning your resources so that the ground is favorable to your side is a basic responsibility of command, so what does it say that our Chief Commander picked our ground so poorly? We're at war with the world's largest religion, in the world's most volatile region - a region our economy depends on utterly. This is brilliant work, Commander.