Why are Democrats ignoring real progress?

Posted on December 25th, 2011 by admin1 in democratic marketing strategy

Turning the Corner in Iraq
Democrats are ignoring real progress.

By Charles Krauthammer

By the day, the debate at home about Iraq becomes increasingly disconnected from the realities of the actual war on the ground. The Democrats in Congress are so consumed with negotiating among their factions the most clever linguistic device to legislatively ensure the failure of the administration’s current military strategy—while not appearing to do so—that they speak almost not at all about the first visible results of that strategy.

And preliminary results are visible. The landscape is shifting in the two fronts of the current troop surge: Anbar province and Baghdad.

The news from Anbar is the most promising. Only last fall, the Marines’ leading intelligence officer there concluded that the U.S. had essentially lost the fight to al-Qaeda. Yet, just this week, the marine commandant, Gen. James Conway, returned from a four-day visit to the province and reported that we “have turned the corner.”

Why? Because, as Lt. Col. David Kilcullen, the Australian counterinsurgency adviser to Gen. David Petraeus, has written, 14 of the 18 tribal leaders in Anbar have turned against al-Qaeda. As a result, thousands of Sunni recruits are turning up at police stations where none could be seen before. For the first time, former insurgent strongholds such as Ramadi have a Sunni police force fighting essentially on our side.

Retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey, a major critic of the Bush war policy, now reports that in Anbar, al-Qaeda is facing “a real and growing groundswell of Sunni tribal opposition.” And that “this is a crucial struggle and it is going our way—for now.”

The situation in Baghdad is more mixed. Thursday’s bridge and Green Zone attacks show the insurgents’ ability to bomb sensitive sites. On the other hand, pacification is proceeding. “Nowhere is safe for Westerners to linger,” reported ABC’s Terry McCarthy on April 3, “but over the past week we visited five different neighborhoods where the locals told us life is slowly coming back to normal.” He reported from Jadriyah, Karrada, Zayouna, Zawra Park and the notorious Haifa Street, previously known as “sniper alley.” He found that “children have come out to play again. Shoppers are back in markets,” and concluded that “nobody knows if this small safe zone will expand or get swallowed up again by violence. For the time being though, people here are happy to enjoy a life that looks almost normal.”

Fouad Ajami, just returned from his seventh trip to Iraq, is similarly guardedly optimistic and explains the change this way: Fundamentally, the Sunnis have lost the battle of Baghdad. They initiated it with their indiscriminate terror campaign that they assumed would cow the Shiites, whom they view with contempt as congenitally quiescent, lower-class former subjects. They learned otherwise after the Samarra bombing (February 2006) kindled Shiite fury—a savage militia campaign of kidnapping, indiscriminate murder and ethnic cleansing that has made Baghdad a largely Shiite city.

Petraeus is trying now to complete the defeat of the Sunni insurgents in Baghdad—without the barbarism of the Shiite militias, whom his forces are simultaneously pursuing and suppressing.

How at this point—with only about half of the additional surge troops yet deployed—can Democrats be trying to force the U.S. to give up? The Democrats say they are carrying out their electoral mandate from the November election. But winning a single-vote Senate majority as a result of razor-thin victories in Montana and Virginia is hardly a landslide.

Second, if the electorate was sending an unconflicted message about withdrawal, how did the most uncompromising supporter of the war, Sen. Joe Lieberman, win handily in one of the most liberal states in the country?

And third, where was the mandate for withdrawal? Almost no Democratic candidates campaigned on that. They campaigned for changing the course the administration was on last November.

Which the president has done. He changed the civilian leadership at the Department of Defense, replaced the head of Central Command and, most critically, replaced the Iraq commander with Petraeus—unanimously approved by the Democratic Senate—to implement a new counterinsurgency strategy.

John McCain has had no illusions about the difficulty of this war. Nor does he now. In his bold and courageous speech at the Virginia Military Institute defending the war effort, he described the improvements on the ground while acknowledging the enormous difficulties ahead. Insisting that success in Iraq is both possible and necessary, McCain made clear that he is willing to stake his presidential ambitions, indeed his entire political career, on a war policy that is unpopular but that he believes must be pursued for the sake of the country. How many other presidential candidates—beginning with, say, Hillary Clinton—do you think are acting in the same spirit?

There is NO REAL PROGRESS in Iraq.

Bush and Company keep trying to paint a rosy picture of the scenario, but U.S. soldiers die every day there.

Wake up, my friend.

7 Comments on “Why are Democrats ignoring real progress?”

  1. Henry VIII

    So if we have turned the corner and all is goodness and light we should be bringing troops home now instead of extending tours of duty. You can’t have it both ways.References :

  2. anthonyinkc

    There’s is little success in Iraq.

    When bombs are still going off in the green zone of Iraq(that is supposedly safe), it shows the USA has failed in even the most basic goals.

    The endless occupation must end, because the Iraqis will continue to fight to be free of US imperialism.References :

  3. Richard S

    The Democrats who oppose the war don’t oppose it for the reasons they tell you; they oppose it because supporting it means supporting George Bush. Every time that man’s name is mentioned, some dam of reason gives way to the flood of emotion — they oppose the war because they hate George Bush, wholly and utterly. They don’t just not like his politics; in many cases they hold a deep personal loathing of him. What they don’t understand is the consequences of such hatred, and what they mean for the American people and soldiers.References :

  4. jeb black

    Charles Krauthammer wrote this propaganda! He’s a paid Neo-con traitor.References : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Krauthammer

  5. g

    cry wolf 100 times… and even if the wolf is coming… no one will believe you that 101st time…

    how many times have I heard "we’re turning the corner"…"we’re making real progress"… "the last throes of the insurgency"?

    which one should I believe… when you said the same things 3 years ago? or two years ago? or one year ago? or the one now?

    and most candidates DID CAMPAIGN ON A MANDATE FOR WITHDRAW… that I noticed…

    thanks for the OPINION PIECE… it’s the same song and dance I’ve heard for 4 years… BUT THIS TIME IT’S REAL… RIGHT?References :

  6. Mikey

    There is NO REAL PROGRESS in Iraq.

    Bush and Company keep trying to paint a rosy picture of the scenario, but U.S. soldiers die every day there.

    Wake up, my friend.References :

  7. rmagedon

    If you want the truth, ask the guys serving over there

    if you want lies ask the media or a politician

    Our guys are getting it done, we need to let them, support them and quit trying to destroy America over this.References :

Leave a Reply to Henry VIII