“To avoid failure of its mission in Iraq, the George W. Bush administration has been driven to seek the help of two major enemies – the Sunni insurgents and the government of Iran – but both initiatives have failed to make progress because officials were not given any real negotiating authority.
“U.S. officials in Baghdad are now pursuing contacts with both declared enemies, with the aim of obtaining their cooperation in overcoming otherwise seemingly insurmountable obstacles to success in Iraq. In both cases, however, the White House has been unwilling to approve concessions required to reach a deal benefiting both sides.
“Administration policymakers have apparently recognised that, without the help of Iran and the Sunni insurgent leaders, it faces the likelihood of spiralling sectarian violence, undiminished Sunni armed resistance, al Qaeda terrorist havens and predominant Iranian political influence.”
The US doesn’t deal with “terrorists”, of course, unless it’s desperate (or it serves a strategic purpose). The situation in Iraq is so dire, the Bush administration will do anything it takes to try and calm the divided nation. A failed policy cannot be redeemed.