Monday, March 27, 2006
As seen at the Big Lizards blog: an AP report of violence in Iraq in which all potentially pro-American context is removed, American reports get "scare quotes" but enemy reports are taken as unvarnished fact... and even the final numbers don't add up.
This, coupled with the willingness of American Congressmen and Senators to give defeatist press conferences -- from Baghdad! -- and thereby aid the enemy while demoralizing our own troops, adds up to a scary picture.
This used to be a no-brainer, people. One can certainly dispute the events that led us to war; but once we're fighting a war, and our troops are overseas fighting and dying for us, some of the debate should end. Once we're fighting the war, we must win it -- or we'll have to fight it all over again in a few years, under conditions far worse than what we have now.
We should not be speaking of retreat. Retreat is a last-ditch tactic, to be used when the only good we can possibly hope to achieve is to save our own lives. That is emphatically not the case here -- American troops are still doing a world of good in Iraq, by anyone's standards.
We must not leave before the job is done. We must not leave until Iraqi troops are able to shoulder the burden without us. That American lawmakers -- some of them veterans! -- should demand that we cut and run is inexcusable. I don't know if they're saying it from mind-numbing ignorance of the consequences of what they propose, or whether it's blinding stupidity, or just callous political maneuvering. I don't care. None of those characteristics belong in a government at war.
Winston Churchill had some words to say, on the subject of retreating from a winning battle:
"Still, if you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed, and still yet if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not so costly, you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you, and only a precarious chance for survival. - There may be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no chance of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves."There are times, and enemies, against whom not fighting is simply not an option. If we do not fight them today, on the ground of our choosing, then we will have to fight them tomorrow... on the ground of their choosing.
Last time we let the terrorists set their own agenda, the ground they chose was Ground Zero, the World Trade Center in New York City. Who wants to wait to see where they'll pick next?
(hat tips to Power Line and the Instapundit.)