This NYT analysis suggests that the Administration has conceded that democracy--such as it is and will be in Iraq-will not stop the violence there. Well, yes: the Administration is talking not about an "insurgency," but as Iraq as the central front in the GWOT. But the Times analyst cant bring himself to concede that this is a point the Bush Administration has been making for quite some time.
On the other hand, this WaPo analysis cant find a single "independent" analyst who hails the referendum results in Iraq. Of the four--the ubiquitous and vitriolic Juan Cole, Larry Diamond, Anthony Cordesman, and Clintonista Martin Indyk--Diamond comes closest to being positive:
"The fundamental problem is this is not a consensus constitution, and one part of the country has massively rejected it," said Larry Diamond, senior fellow at Stanford Universitys Hoover Institution and a former adviser to the U.S.-led Iraqi provisional government. "This was not a joyful vote. It was a pragmatic vote to continue the process."
No one asked him what he makes of the fact that two of the Sunni-dominated provinces apparently voted for the Constitution. And the lack of balance in the entire article suggests that the thesis was there before the experts were consulted.