Well, it seems miracles can happen after all.
The US mid-term election results are in, the Democrats control the House, and may yet control the Senate, and Rumsfeld has stepped down.
I'm hoping these are the first signs that the national paranoia will ease, human rights will be restored, and the troops will be withdrawn. It will take time, of course, but the USA needs to get back in touch with the rest of the world.
These events give me more hope than I've had in quite a while.