As I see it, there is one simple question now pending about Iraq:
Will Iraq dissolve into civil war?
I fear it will. Recent reports of government ministers being assassinated do not bode well.
As I have questioned before, what will we do if we are ordered by the "sovereign" government to leave? Would we dare walk away? Much as I was opposed to going to Iraq, I think that *someone* has to stay there.
I'm not sure that anyone else would be better--who else would go? Turkey? Laughable. The Kurds would revolt immediately. Iran? Ditto. Maybe a multinational force from the Arab League? Riiiiiight. Oh, what about the UN? Can't they take over? Well, they could, I suppose, but the UN doesn't have an army, and would have to round up 150,000 troops from somewhere? And remember that the UN was outgunned in Uganda ten years ago. This would make Uganda look like a (dry and dusty) picnic. How about NATO? Sending NATO would be functionally identical to keeping the US troops there.
I hope someone in our government has some good ideas, but based on what we've seen so far, I'm not optimistic... Unfortunately, we may be the best, and only, option.