At the beginning of the Iraq occupation, supporters of the war talked about the “tipping point” - the moment at which the occupation becomes accepted by the population.
Now the term is back in fashion, only this time in reference to the point at which the occupation begins to fall apart.
All the statistics emerging from Iraq show that this day is coming fast. The number of US casualties continues to rise, as does the nature and effectiveness of the resistance.
Last month was one of the bloodiest, with 105 US troops killed. This month looks set to continue the pattern - 19 US soldiers have died over the past seven days.
The majority of Americans who are paying the price for the occupation are white men aged 19–25 recruited from high unemployment “rust belt” states such as Pennsylvania, and also Texas and California.
Since June 2005, a rising number of US and Iraqi patrols have ended in “violent incidents” that prove that resistance fighters are becoming bolder.
Since summer of this year, the US military has recorded an average of 105 attacks on its soldiers every day. This is the highest monthly average since the invasion in 2003.
There has also been a steady rise in the number of attacks
initiated by the resistance. In July 2004, the resistance initiated over 2,000 attacks. By July of this year, it had risen to 4,000 a month.
For supporters of the war the term “winnable” has lost all meaning. As Richard Haass, a top ranking Republican, admitted to Time magazine, “We are reaching a tipping point both on the ground but also in the political debate in the US about Iraq.
“The real question is how poorly it’s going to end up.”