Nouri al-Maliki's, Iraq's Prime Minister, attempt to crush militia strongholds in Basra is failing; members of his own security forces defected and districts of Baghdad fell to Shia militia gunmen.
The Times notes that:
"In Baghdad, thousands of people marched in demonstrations in Shia areas demanding an end to the Basra operation, burning effigies of Mr al-Maliki, whom they branded a new dictator, and carrying coffins with his image on it."
There is now a the very real danger of civil war in the South.
Bush supports al-Maliki's tactics, referring to them as "bold".
Being bold is all very well, but competence is also required.