The explosions that ripped through cities in Iraq, killing more than 60 people, obviously don’t represent what Iraqis want for a future, nor what America hoped to achieve there at the cost of thousands of lives and immense amounts of money.
But it’s the future there, like it or not.
“This is our destiny,” despaired one of the more than 250 Iraqis wounded in the set of bombings.
We hope not, but it is realistic: The furies unleashed by al-Qaida and its terrorist ilk don’t go away overnight.
We supported the war in Iraq, based in part on the late Saddam Hussein’s defiance of United Nations sanctions and the possibility — ultimately, and fortunately, not true — that he had possession of weapons of mass destruction.
Saddam placed himself in the wrong with his refusal to cooperate with weapons inspectors, and he eventually was to be punished with execution by his long-abused countrymen.
Still, after all this time, no one can say the wounds in Iraqi society are fully healed. The United States can encourage the forces of law in the country, and still has military capacity to back up Iraqi forces, but that is drawing down now.
American officials condemned the recent bombings, although it also is worthy of note that violence overall is down.
What Monday’s killings emphasize is that Iraq has such a long way to go, but Iraqis will have to track down the killers, defuse the hatreds in their own society and provide a better life for their own people.
After all that has been done and said about Iraq, destiny is something that still can be changed.