The U.S. President may have had noble aims, but his administration's policies have helped push the region toward catastrophe.
So, how did things go wrong? The Bush Administration is not entirely to blame. The Middle East is a tough neighborhood, and many of its various ills - repression, extremism and conflict - have been around for decades. Bush deserves credit, in fact, for reversing - on paper if not in practice - years of American policy by promoting democracy in the Arab world and calling for an independent Palestinian state. But the Bush Administration made five fatal mistakes that contributed to the crisis in which it now finds itself.