Washington Post columnist David Ignatius thinks so. An excerpt from his Thursday column, which he filed from Baghdad:
There has been so much bad news out of Iraq lately that you have to pinch yourself when good things seem to be happening. But there are unmistakable signs here this week that Iraq's political leaders are taking the first tentative steps toward forming a broad government of national unity that could reverse the country's downward slide.
What has brought Iraq's political factions together is the crisis that followed the Feb. 22 bombing of the Samarra mosque, which raised the danger that Iraq might tumble into a full-scale civil war. The country's political leaders seemed to realize, as they stood at the brink, that they would either come together or Iraq would fall apart. So far they seem to be choosing unity -- or at least serious talks about unity.
Note that the column was filed a few hours before Iraq's parliament convenened later in the day for the first time since elections in January.
So what did they do? Squabble for an hour and then go home for another few weeks.
Operation Swarmer, the largest airborne assault of the occupation, continues apace near Samarra, scene of the Golden Mosque blast on February 22 that unleashed the current binge of sectarian revenge killings.
CNN and other media outlets are falling all over themselves to sort of declare the operation a success, which the brass is, of course. But as we've learned the hard way, that term is relative. The haul from Operation Swarmer to date -- 31 insurgents detained and half a dozen weapons caches found -- doesn't exactly seem overwhelming.As usual, Wretchard at the Belmont Club has the best wrap-up and some great links for the military wonks out there. You know, order of battle and all that stuff.