New Model Army
compares the New Iraqi Army (Improved! With 50% fewer Baathists!) with the ARVN. Particularly telling, I thought, was this quote:
"My family's already made a reservation on a plot of land to bury me," said Yusuf, 29, breaking into a grin as the men traded barbs tinged with gallows humor. "As soon as [the Americans] leave, I'm taking off my hat," he said, tipping his red baseball cap emblazoned with the corps' emblem, "and putting on a yashmak," the head scarf sometimes worn by resistance fighters.
The sad reality is that the Bushies may think they can hand over the governance of Iraq by next summer -- and they may be able to hand over the symbols of government by then -- but the power behind the throne will be wearing US Army uniforms for quite a while.