"I don't want to put it any more strongly than that and it would be foolish to do so...An interesting way to spin it, John. By implication, there are also huge, reality-based causes for pessimism. Sounds a lot like your election campaign, doesn't it?
"It is too early to claim anything other than that there are small cautiously based signs of optimism."
And let's remember why we are there:
"Any suggestion that we are going to turn our backs on the Americans - are going to turn our backs on the Iraqis - at this very critical stage would be wrong."Yes, those poor Americans - I mean, Iraqis - need all the help they can get, don't they?