The verbal report to be written by the White House and delivered as if it were their own to Congress by General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker has to be the most eagerly-awaited non-event of all time. Everyone already knows what's going to be said, in broad sweep if not in detail.
The neoconservative Heritage Foundation has their own version of what will be said, written by Kirk A. Johnson, who served as Deputy Director for Assessments in the Joint Strategic Planning and Assessment office at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad in 2006-2007. I've a strong feeling you can take this as the gospel version.
1. The "surge" has been effective at reducing civilian casualty rates, especially in Baghdad.
We're not going to give you checkable statistics for any of these claims, you'll just have to trust us.
2. Engaging local tribal leaders and provincial leaders has been effective not only in aiding security but also in improving local governance.
Just don't mention that this was never a part of the Surge to begin with, will continue to happen as long as there is a surge of duffelbags full of cash no matter how many troops are on the ground and will end up arming Sunnis for the civil war.
3. Iran continues to train and equip insurgents in Iraq.
Evidence? We "assess" it to be the case based on what our trustworthy MeK terrorist interrogators told us detainees told them. Oh, and because we think iraqis are too pig-stupid to mnake their own EFP's. What do you mean, the U.S. is training and equipping insurgents too? Anbar, where's that?
4. A withdrawal of U.S. troops at this time would spark a humanitarian disaster.
You wouldn't want to see all those Bush apparatchiks and arms company CEO's jumping from high buildings...oooh, messy. Iraq? Oh, well since 70% of the attacks in Iraq are aimed at occupying forces, if we left the level of violence would..umm...err...
Conclusion. Both men will likely ask Congress and the American people for more time—time to capitalize on the successes of the surge and the breathing room it is providing to the Iraqi political process.
So that they can take long holidays and refuse to deal with each other at a more leisurely pace.
That's it, that's all. Thank you Congress for the next FU. Try the veal.