Monday, July 30, 2007

Threshold Of Undeniability

There is one of two possibilities pertaining to the Michael O'Hanlon/Kenneth Pollack/Brookings Institution Iraq piece in today's New York Times: either the Enemy Media "paper of record"'s anti-war filter is in serious need of replacement, or the Petraeus "Surge" is becoming too successful for even them to deny:

Here is the most important thing Americans need to understand: We are finally getting somewhere in Iraq, at least in military terms. As two analysts who have harshly criticized the Bush Administration’s miserable handling of Iraq, we were surprised by the gains we saw and the potential to produce not necessarily “victory” but a sustainable stability that both we and the Iraqis could live with.

After the furnace-like heat, the first thing you notice when you land in Baghdad is the morale of our troops. In previous trips to Iraq we often found American troops angry and frustrated — many sensed they had the wrong strategy, were using the wrong tactics and were risking their lives in pursuit of an approach that could not work.

Today, morale is high. The soldiers and marines told us they feel that they now have a superb commander in General David Petraeus; they are confident in his strategy, they see real results, and they feel now they have the numbers needed to make a real difference…

How much longer should American troops keep fighting and dying to build a new Iraq while Iraqi leaders fail to do their part? And how much longer can we wear down our forces in this mission? These haunting questions underscore the reality that the surge cannot go on forever. But there is enough good happening on the battlefields of Iraq today that Congress should plan on sustaining the effort at least into 2008.
Whether you consider Brookings "hard-left" or merely "left-leaning," the NYT certainly fits the former description, and they actually published this non-defeatist analysis from non-token-righties. If that's any sort of barometer of the slowly turning public opinion tide, what are congressional Democrats going to be able to say or do when September rolls around when even their house media organ is saying, "Give the 'Surge' a chance"?

Do I even have to type it? Crap all over the robust lack of political progress on behalf of the Iraqi government (which is itself a self-fulfilling prophecy).

That objection too has an answer - but not one that anybody in the Beltway wants to address:

Left to their own devices, the Iraqis would undoubtedly have made considerable progress toward national unity, and a representative government worthy of the name. But the Iraqis are not left alone, because the battle that is currently being waged in their country is part of a larger war, in which the most dangerous force is the Islamic Republic of Iran. Until Iran is defeated, Iraqi leaders will always cater to the edicts coming from Tehran.

So when deep thinkers like Senators Lugar, Biden, Reid, Domenici, and Clinton beat up on the Iraqi political class, and cite their failure as the basis for an American retreat, someone should ask them how they intend to deal with Iran, which is the main saboteur of Iraq, and our main enemy. It seems the Iranians already have a veto power over Iraqi parliamentary proceedings. If we leave, their power will grow dramatically.
And we already have Mrs. Clinton's answer to that: a return to "robust diplomacy" of the sort that turned North Korea (and is turning Iran) into rogue nuclear powers, the latter of which will have two satellite states extending its contiguous reach from the Caspian Sea to the Mediterranean Sea.

The "Surge" surge won't change the Dems' retreat & defeat tune, but hopefully it will stop GOP knees from knocking long enough to give General Petraeus and the boys (and girls) the extra time to finish the mission that not even the "Grey Hag" can deny they've earned.

UPDATE: Two House Donks are inching off the treason reservation - and one of them is a Muslim!