It's time to leave the country

At least, if the country you're in is the USA, and you don't mightily fancy going off to get killed in Iraq. Yes folks, Bush is bringing back the draft. Cue "very special episodes" in every single teen drama, where one unpopular cast member gets drafted à la Happy Days.

"The closest parallel to the Iraq situation is the British in Northern Ireland, where you also had some people supporting the occupying army and some opposing them, and where the opponents were willing to resort to terror tactics," says Charles Peña, director of defense studies at the libertarian Cato Institute. "There the British needed a ratio of 10 soldiers per 1,000 population to restore order, and at their height, it was 20 soldiers per 1,000 population. If you transfer that to Iraq, it would mean you'd need at least 240,000 troops and maybe as many as 480,000.

"The only reason you aren't hearing these kinds of numbers discussed by the White House and the Defense Department right now," Peña adds, "is that you couldn't come up with them without a return to the draft, and they don't want to talk about that."

Incidentally, if you're running a military operation, the last place you want to hear it compared to is Northern Ireland. Hey guys! 30 years! Still no peace! Good luck in Iraq though!

Meanwhile, Reason Online points out that since the US government has decided (incorrectly, and contrary to existing legal precedent) that the US Constitution does not apply in Guantanamo Bay, it cannot prosecute for treason the translator it has accused of spying there. Ah, sweet irony.