Turning Point

George Bush's global holy war threatens our Presidency—and perhaps the future of our nation

Despite the evidence that the public was misled into the Iraq war, neither Bush nor any of the war's architects have accepted responsibility for the false claims or admitted to a single substantial mistake through all the promotion, planning, and execution of the invasion and the ongoing military occupation.

Though Mr. Bush declared major combat over in Iraq nearly a year ago, the war continues and the fighting against insurgent forces is nearly as fierce as in the first weeks of the invasion. The toll of dead and wounded has mounted into the thousands on both sides—tens of thousands on the Iraqi side.

During his televised press conference, the president said that even if some mistakes had occurred, invading Iraq was the right thing do. This was so, he said, because this war will "change the world." By my count he made this hubristic claim three times that night. The last came toward the end, when, in a sermon-like tone, as if imploring the national audience to take his words seriously, he proclaimed, "We're changing the world. . . . It's a conviction that's deep in my soul."

Americans take his faith seriously. Many of them, however, may not trust his presidential judgments.

Bush also said that night, "This country must go on the offense and stay on the offense." Americans have a right to wonder if his plan for the world means that we will be at war for generations.

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