Winning a war with Iraq is not the problem. Getting rid of Saddam Hussein is not the problem either, we can probably achieve both missions, although the cost may be more that expected.
The problem, is what happens after we have 'won?'
To roll the credits back a notch, lets look at where we are in Afghanistan after 'winning.' The National Army we put in place dares not venture outside Kabul. Vice President Qadir was assassinated on July 6th and there has since been an attempt on President Hamid Karzai, a very nearly successful operation by either al Qaeda, the Taliban, or any one of a number of pissed off warlords. The Taliban has regrouped and threatens a prolonged guerilla campaign similar to the one that ultimately caused the Russians to go home. American troops are particularly targeted. American bases are infiltrated with (take your choice of the above groups) to the extent that no tactical moves are made without forewarning.
Afghanistan is coming apart in our hands. And yet, the 'quick victory' there, the vaunted success of air power is touted as a template for what is to come in Iraq. The American public is being given the good news, withheld from the bad.
A pillar of Iraq theory has it that al Qaeda is looking to arm itself with nuclear weapons and Saddam may be close to developing a weapon. Pakistan is not close, it is there, already a nuclear power. Nuclear material, possibly intact warheads, are known to have walked off Russian nuclear stockpiles on the black market. If al Qaeda becomes nuclear, it's far more practical and possible for them to acquire such weapons from those sources.
Bernard Lewis, a well-regarded Princeton Middle East historian who seems to have Cheney's ear, says, "By defeating Hitler and...