How low does the credibility of the U.S. government have to sink before support for the war collapses entirely? After Tet, everyone understood -- even if they rarely admitted it -- that the United States was fighting simply to postpone the political and psychological aftermath of defeat. Have we now reached that point in Iraq? Or are there too many illusions left that still need to be destroyed?
But, gluttons for punishment (other people's punishment) that Americans are, the endgame might not play out so simply. The speed with which public opinion has turned against the war could just be another cultural artifact of our increasingly scatter-brained society -- in which the daily death toll is tucked away somewhere between the next American Idol and the latest pretrial developments in the Michael Jackson case.