The ill-fated National Party leader has received much abuse over his comments, which are more logical than they might first appear, especially if one thinks beyond the sound-bites and media releases put out by Dear Leader's Ninth Floor.
Now, I had never heard of Prospect magazine, since its appearance in the UK followed my departure over here.
But appareantly it is well respected and "centre-left," and noted for a style of in-depth essays, far meatier than anything you might find in this part of the world
Anyway, the latest issue looks at the War in Iraq and declares "Mission Accomplished", saying the country remains one, the big questions about its future are settled, it is a democracy, and bar a few bombings, civil war has been avoided.
Yet, the abuse poured on Key, though I don't think National has been has skilfil as it should jhave been, just seems to confirm the media strategy of 'build-up and knock down' that I highlighted at the weekend.
In the meantime, I'll leave the opening few pars from Prospect and recommend a reading of the rest.
"With most Sunni factions now seeking a deal, the big questions in Iraq have been resolved positively. The country remains one, it has embraced democracy and avoided all-out civil war. What violence remains is largely local and criminal
The question of what to do in Iraq today must be separated from the decision to topple Saddam Hussein four and a half years ago. That decision is a matter for historians.
By any normal ethical standard, the coalition's current project in Iraq is a just one. Britain, America and Iraq's other allies are there as the guests of an elected government given a huge mandate by Iraqi voters under a legitimate constitution.
The UN approved the coalition's role in May 2003, and the mandate has been renewed annually since then, most recently this August.
Meanwhile, the other side in this war are among the worst people in global politics: Baathists, the Nazis of the middle east; Sunni fundamentalists, the chief opponents of progress in Islam's struggle with modernity; and the government of Iran.
Ethically, causes do not come much clearer than this one.Some just wars, however, are not worth fighting. There are countries that do not matter very much to the rest of the world. Rwanda is one tragic example; and its case illustrates the immorality of a completely pragmatic foreign policy.
But Iraq, the world's axial country since the beginning of history and all the more important in the current era for probably possessing the world's largest reserves of oil, is no Rwanda.
Nor do two or three improvised explosive devices a day, for all the personal tragedy involved in each casualty, make a Vietnam."