Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Petraeus Report . . . What now?



"The greatest argument against a Democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter." - Churchill

Moveon.org’s new advertisement against General Petraeus in the New York Times, and the Democrat party’s reticence to speak out against it demonstrate two things 1) The far left is now part of the mainstream within the Democratic party and 2) The Democrat’s have but one interest - to lose the war in Iraq. Their silence speaks volumes. With no proof to the contrary, the left’s attack on General Petraeus is unremitting.
Whatever the cost, whatever the price, the left will do whatever it takes to remove Bush from power. There can only be two reasons why the Democrats have not publicly condemned the ad, either because they fear Moveon.org (Moveon.org has become a major power house among the Democratic party) or they agree with the ad. The left’s vitriol has grown to such extremes that like usual, it puts our nation in peril.

The New York Times stock price has hit a new 52 week low. Today’s price is $20.78. Moveon.org received an ad which retails at just under $170,000 for under $70,000. The New York Time’s bread and butter, its advertising revenue has been sharply declining for years. Investors are the best gauge as to what’s happening at the newspaper. Investors understand that the New York Times has been complicit in trying to cause the downfall of Bush regardless of the cost to the American people. I think this latest move in allowing the printing of this advertisement by moveon.org will have a deleterious effect on the newspaper.

General Petraeus, a four star general, is probably the most credible source of the war. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Petraeus . This is a man of integrity and principle. In an interview with Fox News yesterday, the interviewer asked about moveon.org’s ad, and as the straightforward man Petraeus is, he explained that no one but he and other principals involved in the surge knew what was on the report. He had to go through the chain of command for collaboration and statistics, but the White House had not seen any part of the report. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Three can keep a secret only if two are dead,” and that would certainly be true with Petraeus’ report with all the collaborative efforts needed from his chain of command. But then again, with the left everything is a conspiracy.

It was the left who said we needed a change of course in Iraq. Bush’s one error is his reluctance to fire incompetence. General Petraeus should have been in charge from the beginning. We changed course in Iraq, and when there is success, (even I doubted if the surge would have any impact), the left goes insane. The Democrats cannot stand any success, and now their true colors are showing.

Not only that, General Petraeus was confirmed by 81 votes in the Senate. 18 cowards just did not bother to show up and vote. 18 of them who are so concerned with the war could just not be bothered. But, General Petraeus was confirmed by the Democrats in the Senate, and now these same Democrats do not support his actions, because they know if they lose this battle, they may lose the White House. I still think Hillary Clinton will be the next president (God forbid!), but they may overplay their hand.

So what is left? (note: that is not a pun on words) The political situation is still a mess. The government is corrupt. But, it is evident from all sources that the surge is working. Islam’s goal, as a political entity, is to grow its hegemony over the entire world where Sharia law is the law of the land. This must not happen. If we lose in Iraq. The consequences will be disastrous. If the Democrats succeed in their push to lose the war, Iran, its surrogates and Al-Queda will grow in ferocity and become the power in the Middle East. Bush’s legacy will ultimately rise or fall on the success or failure in Iraq. There have been a lot with which I disagree in Bush’s handling of the war. I don’t necessarily agree that Democracy will work in Iraq, because Democracy as a political system is anathema to Islam. If, however, Iraq becomes a stable force and an ally in the Middle East, the benefits to the United States will be enormous. So, as Americans, we should unite and hope this experiment works, because there is a lot at stake.

Just a side note: When Cindy Sheehan says she is going to retire, why doesn't she keep her word and do just that - retire preferably to Venezuela.

6 comments:

Rafael said...

Well first of all, there some proof to the ad, the Gen. own words in a past op-ed for once and multiple public appearances. Second how can you loose something when you (not you personally, but certainly the Administration) keep redefining what victory is? Third I would not call what the Gen. did on Fox an interview, not by a long shot.

Criticism the Gen. or this administration does not put any nation in peril, allowing thoughtless and useless wars to occur does, plus using the threat of terrorism to terrorize your own people.

Also considering how much the NYT did to sell the war in the first place (let us not forget Judith Miller who now has joined a neocon think tank and Michael Gordon, who still writes for the NYT), maybe a little more truth telling is needed.

The Surge has failed in the one measure that matters, Iraq is not any closer to been a stable and sovereign country today that it was 6 months ago.

As for Bush, I think he has earned, time and time again, the "vitriol" of a nation if not the world.

Rafael said...

Also don't make the mistake (if it was a mistake) to conflate a religion with some of its most extremist adherents. That to wide a basket by far.

Rybu said...

I agree with some of what you say. The question I have for you is: What constitutes a loss vs. a win in Iraq? With a win, what is the next step? I struggle with answering that.

I think the Dem's are crying "too little too late" and that that is getting confused with them being "against success". (I'd even offer that many dem's would say Bush is against success- but I've eluded to the fact I don't buy that). I also think that that is how the Republicans want it to appear.

Now, I don't strongly associate with either party and I think that the inability of congress to make any relevant decisions is showing. We can't afford to "lose" and we can't afford for the war to carry on forever from Country to Country.

I agree the blame probably shouldn't be on Petraeus but do find it hard to believe that Bush was watching the last few days as intently as we all were- wondering what he would say.

sims said...

You're a thoughtful guy, and it disheartens me to see you so blatantly parrot the far right's talking points. I mean, they've been wrong about everything, every single thing in regard to Iraq. So instead of being furious that you have been bilked out of billions of dollars and thousands of soldiers' lives, you are upset that the Democratic Party won't come down against (an admittedly fringe) group's exercise of free speech?

And speaking of fringe, to pontificate from the right about the lunatics running the asylum, when you have the Feiths, Rumsfelds, Cheneys, Ralph Reeds et al (ad nauseum) for so long dictating to your party what truly matters (Flag burning! Gay marriage! Terry Schiavo!), you just don't get to throw aspersions around about someone's politics not being in the mainstream.

Honestly, this was the thing that bothered you the most this week, that Move On might have hurt General Petraeus' feelings? And if he is, as you say, the most credible source on the war, why is his boss at the US Central Command, William J. Fallon, now writing his own evaluation of the situation in Iraq? That seems kind of strange, doesn't it? Will you support the now inevitable character assassination of the Admiral that is bound to ensue from the good people at the RNC and FOX News?

It is abhorrent that the President uses a decorated officer like Petraeus as a salesman for his own failed policies. Bush should drag himself in front of Congress and take questions about the policy, instead of cheapening the General's service by turning him into a Surge Pimp.

I'm going to trademark that phrase, so don't steal it.

Bush’s one error is his reluctance to fire incompetence.

It's true, the man won't resign.

A fish rots first from the head, and he has consistently ordered his now nearly broken military to pursue a strategy that simply cannot work. Democracy in Iraq is a pipe dream, and wishing upon a four-star general won't make your deams come true, Tinkerbell. The boy who refuses to grow up resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

And you know what? I don't speak for the Democrats, or anyone else. But the straw man of saying that they or anyone else "wants us to lose" is utter crap. It's a coward's argument, and it means nothing. Wishing for victory is not a strategy, and asking for a drawing down of our involvement to preserve or military is not in any way the same thing as praying for defeat.

I guess according to your thinking, Chuck Hagel and John Warner are hippie-liberal defeatists. Get a new slogan, this dog doesn't hunt.

Thoughts of a genius mind said...

Sims,

I do not go by any talking points. I observe, I think and then I write.

First, let me make it clear, I have always thought Sadaam Hussein had WMDs even though we didn't find any. He had eight months to get rid of them (So did the Dems by the way). But, I am also of the opinion we needed to go in even if he didn't have WMDs for other reasons.

So, that leaves - Are Bush's policies a failure? In large part - yes, but then again we floundered for the first year in World War 2 also. I believe our strategy was so fatally flawed because we didn't go in to fight a war. If you are going to fight a war, you destroy the enemy like we did Japan until they are subjugated. This is also what Islam understands.

Bush wants to establish a Democracy. I have my doubts on whether a Democracy will work in that region, because it is a Western ideal. I wouldn't even mind having a dictator that was an ally to the United States, but having an ally in that region of the world would be a huge asset to the United States.

I believe Moveon.org is a threat to the Democrat party because every candidate is beholden to them, and they represent the far left of the Democrat party. The candidates are moving from to the Clintonian center to the extreme left. This does not bode well for the US nor for our economy.

Bush has spent us into oblivion but every Democrat candidate wants to compound the problem by raising taxes and socializing health care, recipes for disaster.

Every candidate wants to withdraw from Iraq immediately - another recipe for disaster. Iran would take over and become the power in the middle east. Iran has been at war with us since the 1970s, and we do nothing about it, and the Dems want to withdraw. Clinton wants to keep a contingent there - fodder for Iran.

I do not agree with a lot of Bush's policies, but I also know that the Dems have been on the wrong side of history in every conflict we have been in. They have been responsible for the communists taking over in Nicaragua, for the slaughter of hundreds of thousands in Viet Nam, for not finishing the Korean War, and the list goes on.

What truly matters to me is our Security, the security of the Borders, the other incidentals you mention are not the important issues today. I still see the Dems wanting to handle the war on Radical Islam as a police matter.

Moveon bothers me because of the power they wield over the candidates. Most Dems don't even realize it.

I see nothing wrong with Bush using Petraeus has his spokesperson on a document he drafted. This is exactly what he should have done. What is abhorrent is the way the Democrat candidates berated him. I have to hand it to Kerry and Pelosi, two Dems I never agree with, but who spoke out against the ad.

I am not sure what the answer is in Iraq at this point, but I know we can't leave until we do something about Iran. Rosie O donnall in her rants said that 600,000 civilians were killed. It is more like 75,000 but her numbers will be attainable if we leave.

Bush had to change strategy. He did it late, but we know its working from all sources, so if its working, why would we want to let anarchy reign by leaving. We still have troops in Europe from the cold war, and troops in Korea.

I read a report that said Iraq had a 6% growth rate last year in their economy - what that means is something is happening right. I never thought the surge would work, but it is, so I may be wrong on other aspects of the war too, so I would rather give the military the benefit of the doubt.

So why would I want to retreat. Retreat in the eyes of the Middle East would look like a victory and embolden the enemy, and I want to win.

sims said...

Sorry for the delay in getting back to you on this, it had slipped my mind.

You make some decent points but you undermine yourself in ways that make me wonder if the possibly sensible asserions you make about the future are even remotely possible.

I do not go by any talking points.

Followed by repeated use of the Democrat party

It's the Democratic Party. The only people who refer to it as the Democrat Party are those who thought it was a good idea to follow serial adulterer, Newt Gingrich's lead. Honestly, it's a dead giveaway, and I never hear anyone but the people way out on the fringe use it. You don't strike me as the type who'd think it was cute, to be honest.

the Dems have been on the wrong side of history in every conflict we have been in. They have been responsible for the communists taking over in Nicaragua, for the slaughter of hundreds of thousands in Viet Nam, for not finishing the Korean War

I sort of feel like FDR may have been on the right side of history on the minor conflict he oversaw, but there's got to be a Kool-Aid-worthy theory out there, I'm sure. And Korea was certainly initiated by a member of the Democratic Party in good standing, so I suppose the "wrong side of history" evaluation depends on how you feel about that particular enterprise. But Eisenhower is the one who negotiated the rather unsatisfying (if ultimately neceessary) end to that war.

Vietnam? A bad call getting in on JFK's and LBJ's part, no doubt. They learned nothing from the French defeat, and knew even less about Vietnamese history dealing with invaders. I would never blame Vietnam on the GOP, although I am absolutely comfortable calling Nixon & Kissinger's running of it absolutely criminal. There is plenty of blame for everyone to share.

And finally:

Moveon bothers me because of the power they wield over the candidates.

If this is the case, why are none of the leading Democratic candidates calling for immediate withdrawal? I would give anything if Moveon's strength and influence had even half the pull on the left's politics as the Christian Coalition's does on the right. At least there would be some balance. The 28% still supporting the President are Believers by nature, and no evidence to the contrary will sway them. Another word is "zealot," which also tends to describe people who strap bombs to themselves and walk into pizza parlors.

Our world would be a great deal better if we had less fanatics of all stripes.

Oh, and 6% growth in the Iraqi economy? I'm sure that's a point of pride while you're sitting in 130 degrees waiting for the electricity to come back on. Hell, the US doesn't even have that kind of growth, maybe if we were invaded and our infrastructure was destroyed, we could have that type of economic boom.

Seems unlikely though, no one invades for coal anymore.

Stay well, sir.

 
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