Six years ago last week, the Iraq War began. The anniversary of that wasn't ignored, but it certainly hasn't been on the agenda for most Americans.
The situation in Iraq didn't even garner a mention at President Obama's news conference on Tuesday night.
I have also maintained that you can accurately predict how big an issue Iraq will be in the news media and in the Congress by how many U.S. soldiers are dying.
That may seem like a crass way to evaluate the situation, but I think the last week proves my point.
One week ago on March 19 was the six year anniversary of the start of the war.
The big issue that day in the Congress was the uproar over AIG bonuses and the economy in general, not Iraq.
"While the country is focused on the shaky economy and egregious abuses of taxpayer dollars like those committed by AIG, we must not forget the tens of thousands of men and women who are still sacrificing in Iraq every day," said Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Florida.)
But that made little impact on the news cycle.
Yesterday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee heard from the President's choice to be Ambassador to Iraq. I would dare say that most people in Washington, D.C. couldn't name that nominee. (Answer: Chris Hill.)
Hill was asked what his goal was in Iraq.
"Senator, I just don't want to screw it up."
Why is Iraq not registering right now? Well, according to the latest statistics on casualties in Iraq, only six American servicemembers have died in March of 2009.
Now let's imagine that the casualty count in March of 2009 was over 100. There would be a drumbeat of stories that six years after the war began, the violence was unabated. The nomination hearing for the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq would be huge, as lawmakers demanded to know why Americans are still being killed, etc.
But that story is back inside the newspaper.
The same thing will be true in Afghanistan. If casualties there are limited, then the news coverage will be as well.
Whether that is right or wrong isn't the point. That's just the way things are.