While the road is difficult, because this war is not limited to Iraq or Afghanistan, but is worldwide, there are many reasons to be cautiously optimistic. As David Brooks noted in the New York Times, "Iraqis are growing more optimistic. Fifty-five percent of Iraqis say their lives are going well, up from 39 percent last August, according to a poll conducted by ABC News and other global television networks. Forty-nine percent now say the U.S. was right to invade Iraq, the highest figure recorded since this poll began in 2004."
Another positive is the provincial elections scheduled for October with national elections to follow.
Does anyone find it strange that support for U.S. efforts to quell the violence is higher in Iraq than in the United States? What is responsible for this approval gap? Part of the explanation is that too many Americans - including much of the media - have grown tired of the war. We want to move on to more pleasant things, like celebrities and the babies they are having out of wedlock.
The enemies of freedom - ours and Iraq's - would be happy to see us return to such trivialities while they focus on winning their war.
As Ambassador Crocker put it, what is needed is resolve and commitment. Al-Qaida and other enemies of the United States seem to have it. They are betting we don't. We'll soon know who is right.