it seems to me that the iraq study group was set up to present a "realist" analysis and set of recommendations. that is why Baker was chosen as head of it.
who set it up? who chose the members?
i am assuming bush wanted political cover to pull out of iraq.
this is very similar to what nixon did with "vietnamization" of the vietnam war: reduce the US army role to that of advisors, and let the locals fight the bad guys. then pull out troops, and declare "peace with honor".
i recently read an article by brent scowcroft claiming that vietnamization would have worked (if the dem congress hadn't sabotaged it), and that we should use the same strategy in iraq.
i think this is what is going on: "iraqization".
there may not be any real alternative--it is hard for a democratic country to fight a war without public support.
No "blue ribbon" committees in Washington are to diffuse responsibility and concentrate power. Nothing has changed. POTUS has the power and needs peace at home to wage war in Iraq.
The President is a class act politician and knows the above.