and you think economic forecasting is bad?
Source Jim Devine
Date 06/05/16/21:42

Thomas Friedman's deadlines on Iraq

[from FAIR, Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting]

"The next six months in Iraq—which will determine the prospects for
democracy-building there—are the most important six months in U.S.
foreign policy in a long, long time." (New York Times, 11/30/03)

"What I absolutely don't understand is just at the moment when we
finally have a UN-approved Iraqi-caretaker government made up of—I
know a lot of these guys—reasonably decent people and more than
reasonably decent people, everyone wants to declare it's over. I don't
get it. It might be over in a week, it might be over in a month, it
might be over in six months, but what's the rush? Can we let this play
out, please?" (NPR's Fresh Air, 6/3/04)

"What we're gonna find out, Bob, in the next six to nine months is
whether we have liberated a country or uncorked a civil war." (CBS's
Face the Nation, 10/3/04)

"Improv time is over. This is crunch time. Iraq will be won or lost in
the next few months. But it won't be won with high rhetoric. It will
be won on the ground in a war over the last mile."
(New York Times, 11/28/04)

"I think we're in the end game now…. I think we're in a six-month
window here where it's going to become very clear and this is all
going to pre-empt I think the next congressional election—that's my
own feeling— let alone the presidential one." (NBC's Meet the Press,

"Maybe the cynical Europeans were right. Maybe this neighborhood is
just beyond transformation. That will become clear in the next few
months as we see just what kind of minority the Sunnis in Iraq intend
to be. If they come around, a decent outcome in Iraq is still
possible, and we should stay to help build it. If they won't, then we
are wasting our time." (New York Times, 9/28/05)

"We've teed up this situation for Iraqis, and I think the next six
months really are going to determine whether this country is going to
collapse into three parts or more or whether it's going to come
together." (CBS's Face the Nation, 12/18/05)

"We're at the beginning of I think the decisive I would say six months
in Iraq, OK, because I feel like this election—you know, I felt from
the beginning Iraq was going to be ultimately, Charlie, what Iraqis
make of it." (PBS's Charlie Rose Show, 12/20/05)

"The only thing I am certain of is that in the wake of this election,
Iraq will be what Iraqis make of it—and the next six months will tell
us a lot. I remain guardedly hopeful." (New York Times, 12/21/05)

"I think that we're going to know after six to nine months whether
this project has any chance of succeeding. In which case, I think the
American people as a whole will want to play it out or whether it
really is a fool's errand." (Oprah Winfrey Show, 1/23/06)

"I think we're in the end game there, in the next three to six months,
Bob. We've got for the first time an Iraqi government elected on the
basis of an Iraqi constitution. Either they're going to produce the
kind of inclusive consensual government that we aspire to in the near
term, in which case America will stick with it, or they're not, in
which case I think the bottom's going to fall out." (CBS, 1/31/06)

"I think we are in the end game. The next six to nine months are going
to tell whether we can produce a decent outcome in Iraq." (NBC's
Today, 3/2/06)

"Can Iraqis get this government together? If they do, I think the
American public will continue to want to support the effort there to
try to produce a decent, stable Iraq. But if they don't, then I think
the bottom is going to fall out of public support here for the whole
Iraq endeavor. So one way or another, I think we're in the end game in
the sense it's going to be decided in the next weeks or months whether
there's an Iraq there worth investing in. And that is something only
Iraqis can tell us." (CNN, 4/23/06)

"Well, I think that we're going to find out, Chris, in the next year
to six months—probably sooner—whether a decent outcome is possible
there, and I think we're going to have to just let this play out."
(MSNBC's Hardball, 5/11/06)

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