Slog™: A special brand of quagmire

iraq-pressbriefing.jpgAfter yesterday’s latest attack on American forces in Iraq, where a rocket was fired upon the al-Rashid Hotel in Baghdad and killed one U.S. occupier (I mean, officer), defense department officials were expressing frustration on Sunday at the increased bravado demonstrated by the strike. The hotel, where U.S. Deputy Defense secretary Paul Wolfowitz was residing during his current visit to Iraq, had been serving as a makeshift American base of operations and was believed to be safe from such provocation by virtue of being ensconced in protective concrete barricades. By striking at such a seemingly secure building, the insurgents have more or less shattered any myth of security for Americans trying to restore order to the embattled nation.
Also of note was the well-nigh un-ironic adoption of last week’s phrase du jour by sympathetic military analysts.
“Placed in the context of insurgent attacks on U.S. forces that are increasing in frequency and effectiveness, this particular operation — notable both for its daring and for what it says about the enemy’s intelligence capabilities — that, yes, it really does promise to be a long, hard slog,” said retired Army Col. Andrew Bacevich, a Persian Gulf War tank commander who is a professor of international relations at Boston University.