The walls are coming down in Baghdad

If the changes work as hoped, it will be a huge step toward restoring normal life in Baghdad. Each move, however, has its pitfalls. Awakening members could return to insurgent activity. Bombers could take advantage of streets without walls. The National Police, long accused of being sectarian, could abuse its new positions.

American commanders concede the risks but contend that the changes are worthwhile, given the potential payoff.