Even strong opponents of the Iraq war are displaying a wary willingness to imagine that events may be taking a turn for the better. Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), who remains deeply skeptical of Bush's unilateral approach to the war, describes himself as "cautiously optimistic" about Middle East developments, including the Iraqi elections and the peaceful anti-Syrian rebellion in Lebanon.
Preparing for tomorrow's expected announcement of a pullout from Lebanon, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad probably shares Levin's growing realization that true democracy is on the march in the Middle East; unlike Levin, however, Assad probably could not be described as "cautiously optimistic". Many are speculating that his regime has been brought to the brink of collapse by these recent events in suddenly-uppity Lebanon. As has been the case with other messy and awkward pullouts, his pullout here is likely to be a "pull-and-pray".