In interviews with the Christian Science Monitor, former U.S. Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger said Iraq could only develop with U.S. help.
"We are the only possible means of getting things put together," he said.
Yet former National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski had a completely opposite view.
"The only way this can come together is if we decide to leave."
Former Secretary of Defense William Cohen said the United States does not have the resources or manpower to stamp out the insurgency militarily.
"The way forward has to be political in nature," he said.
For its part, the U.S. military agrees the ultimate solution must come from the Iraqi leadership and people, and not U.S. troops, but the matter of getting Iraqi leaders to take more control of their country has been difficult, the report said.