Victory Is Not An Option

Posted By Elgin Hushbeck

The response to the improving situation in Iraq among the Democrats is very revealing.  Last time I pointed out how their political rhetoric has become their reality.  They have said that Iraq is a mistake and a failure for so long that, for them, not only is victory is inconceivable, there is not even room for positive news.  

This can be seen in Senator Clinton’s comments to General Petraeus, when she said “You have been made the de facto spokesmen for what many of us believe to be a failed policy. Despite what I view as your rather extraordinary efforts in your testimony both yesterday and today, I think that the reports that you provide to us really require the willing suspension of disbelief”   

For Clinton, Petraeus’ reports on the progress of the war could not possibly be correct.  After all, as she said, the policy has already failed. How can something that has failed, succeed?

Much the same can be seen in the prepared remarks of Senator Obama, “It is long past time to turn the page in Iraq, where each day we see the consequences of fighting a war that should never have been authorized and should never have been waged. We in Congress must take action to change the President’s failed policy.”

While Petraeus reported that the new strategy has resulted in significant declines in the number of attacks, and in the number of civilian death, while significantly increasing the number of weapons caches found and cleared, along with increasing support by the population, Senator Edwards statement on the General’s report painted a different picture, “Even in the face of rising American causalities, greater civil unrest and no political progress, the Congress continues a false debate about whether President Bush should be granted more time.  President Bush’s Iraq strategy has failed.”

For many on the left, success of any type is simply not  an option, and victory is simply inconceivable.  It is not so much that they want the U.S. to lose, but rather, because of their mind set they do not even think in those terms.  As Nancy Pelosi described in an interview shortly have the Democrats won back the house, “It’s not a war to be won, but a problem to be solved.”  Since this is not a war, there is nothing to lose, and the problem, i.e. that our troops are being killed, can thus be solved by simply leaving.

This same point of view can be seen in Edwards’ statement when he says that “Congress must support our troops by using every tool available to force the president to agree to a withdrawal.”

Yet as the troops have a different view.  Rather than wanting to get out of Iraq as soon as possible, they are re-enlisting at records numbers, and do want victory.  As Captain David Bradley put it “we owe it to the Iraqis to finish the job.”  Staff Sergeant Ramond Piper, said, ”People back home just don’t see the progress we’re making or they would not want us to be withdrawn.”  Spec. Edward Dubois whose son was born shortly after he left for Iraq, had this to say on the question of leaving,  “If we pull out of here right now, it’s going to be total chaos. We’re going to be back to doing it all over again in 10 more years or 20 more years, and I don’t want my son to have to come back over here and take my place”

The difference between the statement of the Democrats and these soldiers results from difference views of the war around us.  What Democrats like Clinton, Obama, Edwards, and Pelosi refuse to see is that like it or not, we are at war, and Iraq is just one front of that war.  It is not a war of our choosing but one in which we were attack, and not just on 9/11, but repeatedly.  We just choose to ignore the earlier attacks, hoping that those who attacked us would just go away, or that we could somehow manage the problem. 

But the enemy we face in militant Islam, is both determined and vicious, and they took our previous inaction as a sign of weakness.  They believe, based on our past history of Vietnam, Lebanon, and Somalia, that while they cannot directly defeat us, if they can just kill enough of our soldier, and get enough car bomb to show up on the nightly news, we will grow tired of the conflict and simply leave, giving them the victory they could not otherwise win.

The calls of current Democratic leadership to withdraw is exactly what our enemies are hoping for and thus must be music to their ears and gives them encouragement that their strategy is working.  If the Democrats get their way, it will not bring about peace, but rather a stronger and emboldened enemy.   And Sgt Piper’s fear may very well be realized and his son will have to go back to fight a Gulf War III, to once again finish what was left undone.

Sep 24th, 2007

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