FALLUJAH, Iraq (AP) - U.S. Marines negotiated a "tentative" agreement Thursday to pull back forces from Fallujah, a deal that would lift a nearly monthlong siege and allow an Iraqi force led by a former Saddam Hussein-era general to handle security. Fresh clashes broke out despite news of a pending deal, and U.S. warplanes dropped bombs on insurgent targets.
I have a bad feeling about "deals" in situations like these. War is a pretty straightforward process in which one side wins and one side loses. Resolutions to armed conflicts that are achieved by negotiation are generally no more than precursors to further armed conflict. Resolutions achieved by total defeat leave a more lasting impression as well as a more permanent result.