Again Things Change
Why do you persist with black or white thinking on this? If this then that? Either it's a focused effort or it's wrong?
Again, why can't the two conflicts (Iraq and GWOT) be interrelated/intertwined? One dependent on the other to some degree and not to other degrees and vice versa?
It's not making sense to you because you keep trying to compartmentalize both conflicts and that isn't fair to the reality of the paradigm shift. Look at the recent video the terrorits made (released today) and look at the nationalities of the terrorists in the video. They don't appear to be Iraqi insurgents so much as they are Algerians, Libyans, etc. In other words, we are attracting terrorists to Iraq instead of other parts of the world. They come from those countries for that reason, to take on the "infidels".
btw, I completely agree that we are stretched thin. Too thin? That is yet to be seen. I also respect your opinion that our ability to reform one country (not "massive reform of the Middle East") in the Middle East and fighting terrorism may be too much for us to handle at the same time. I really do share your fears, because I agree that it could be too much. So far it hasn't been too much to give up on the Iraqis who want this new government.
But we (as a nation) also felt that way about every single conflict we ever entered going back to the Revolution, especially in the early stages. We've always been worried at one time or another that we might not succeed.