Forget what all those high-powered military strategists say about why Iraq is losing the war. Instead, we have stumbled across the basic reason - and it has nothing to do with Baghdad's lack of air superiority or Saddam Hussein's inept planning.

The disclosure came when Cable News Network showed a long line of Iraqi troops in the process of surrendering Tuesday. Walking side by side, the surrendering troops had to cross into an allied-controlled zone marked off by a broad band of red tape.As one surrendering soldier tried to walk over the waist-high tape, a fellow Iraqi right beside him lifted up the tape and crawled under, tripping his comrade. So much for the image of the Iraqi military as a well-oiled fighting machine. And thanks for the comic relief.