Too much success, I suppose, can distract from a man trying to grab the brass ring. Obama’s complaint du jour: Iraq is distracting us from other threats:
This war distracts us from every threat that we face and so many opportunities we could seize. This war diminishes our security, our standing in the world, our military, our economy, and the resources that we need to confront the challenges of the 21st century. By any measure, our single-minded and open-ended focus on Iraq is not a sound strategy for keeping America safe.
What opportunities? Capitulating to those that would threaten and/or attack us? And if our focus on Iraq, regardless of what got us there in the first place, “is not a sound strategy for keeping America safe,” then what pray tell, is? Withdrawing before conditions are stable enough? Brilliant.
The point is we’re there now. Senator McCain sounds off:
And I note that he is speaking today about his plans for Iraq and Afghanistan before he has even left, before he has talked to General Petraeus, before he has seen the progress in Iraq, and before he has set foot in Afghanistan for the first time. In my experience, fact-finding missions usually work best the other way around: First you assess the facts on the ground, then you present a new strategy.”
Yet Obama insists:
“I will end this war as president,” he said, speaking from a podium that said “Judgment to Lead.” Obama addressed the crowd with a line of American flags behind him.
It could be the biggest frack-up of the entire war. Worse perhaps than committing to this war in the first place, depending on your perspective.
The President warns:
President Bush was asked what advice he might give Obama as he prepared to visit Iraq. The president said he would ask Obama to listen carefully to Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander, and U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker.
“It’s a temptation to let the politics at home get in the way, you know, with the considered judgment of the commanders,” Bush said.
And then bravo on the AP, for once, calling this out:
Meanwhile, the New York Daily News reported that the Obama campaign altered its Web site to remove a statement that Bush’s surge of troops in Iraq “is not working.” Over the weekend, the site was changed to describe an “improved security situation” at the cost of U.S. lives.
Campaign aide Wendy Morigi told the newspaper that Obama is “not softening his criticism of the surge. We regularly update the Web site to reflect changes in current events.”
Heh…. “change in current events”. Kind of like the way the Clintons would lick their fingers and stick ’em into the air every day of the 1990s to ascertain policy positions based on how the wind was blowing that day (via focus groups and push polls). I’m not saying one shouldn’t digest current events and evaluate your existing world view or position against said events. It was just so very clear LAST YEAR that the surge was working. Now he has no choice to admit that is has been effective.
I agree that it was “at the cost of U.S. lives,” but I would also add, “at the cost of even more Iraqi lives.” Iraqis that are a part of the Iraq National Guard, the National Police force, and numerous other armed, Iraqi citizens willing to defend and die for their communities.
I want out of there, too, dammit. Yesterday. Last year even. But we have to complete the mission. To not do so is so unfathomably stupid I wouldn’t know where to begin. Except maybe with Obama.
Oh, and AP: if you don’t like all my story quoting you can blow it out your spotty white asses.