Why the Shrub needs this war

And this is from Reuters, not the alternative media!

President Bush used to call him "the evil one" but in recent months Osama bin Laden has become the unmentionable one, replaced by Iraqi President Saddam Hussein as the chief enemy of the United States.


"They didn't find him, they don't know where he is and it's not in the administration's interest to keep reminding the American people of that," said Michael Sherry, a historian at Northwestern University in Chicago.

"Every time bin Laden is mentioned, it's a reminder that they don't have a clue and it's a reminder of their failure to fulfill their own stated war aims and it's a reminder that the war on terrorism has become directionless and not very effective," Sherry said.


The problem for Bush is, without an invasion of Iraq, there is no clear next step in a global war on terrorism, which Bush declared after Sept. 11 would be the defining mission for his generation for the foreseeable future.

"With no Osama bin Laden and no Saddam Hussein, the war on terrorism becomes a metaphorical abstraction, like the war on poverty," said Keith Shimko, a political scientist at Purdue University in Indiana.

"Clearly we ought to be rebuilding Afghanistan and securing its future. But we as a people have a short attention span and it's hard to keep a focus on nondramatic things that cost money and don't provide the immediate satisfaction you get from blowing things up," he said.