I'm always up for hearing about new think tanks - trying to figure out where they get their money - who they are shilling for, etc. The Jaffee Center, in Israel, is apparently one of the best in the world, by general consensus. They just issued their annual report - The Middle East Strategic Balance 2003-2004. It makes several important assertions, one of which reads:
During the past year Iraq has became a major distraction from the global war on terrorism. Iraq has now become a convenient arena for jihad, which has helped al-Qaeda to recover from the setback it suffered as a result of the war in Afghanistan. With the growing phenomenon of suicide bombing, the US presence in Iraq now demands more and more assets that might have otherwise been deployed against various dimensions of the global terrorist threat.