Victor Davis Hanson does a pretty good job reading Democrat minds.
A frequently asked question recently has been something like the following: do you think the Democratic Left really wishes us to lose in Iraq? Or how can you explain the overwhelming emphasis by the liberal media and politicians on Abu Ghraib or Guantanamo and the relative neglect of medal-winners in Iraq?
I think the answers are something like the following. The liberal Democratic leadership believes that Iraq can fail, thereby repudiating the Bush doctrine and the current war on terror, discrediting conservative candidates at large, teaching the American people about the limits of empire and foreign adventurism, restoring humility to foreign policy, ushering in a Democratic renaissance under which higher taxes, more entitlements, and greater government intervention promote egalitarianism and ‘correct’ the past mistakes of the unenlightened electorate—and do so without serious or lasting harm to their nation’s security.
Indeed, in this defeatist view, the take-over of liberal government following flight might well be salutary in showing the world that the US has learned its lessons from Iraq, now elected the right people, and promises never again to commit such mistakes. The cost in blood and treasure was never worth the supposed goal of a constitutional Iraq, and the money would have been better spent on social programs at home that promote the general welfare of poorer Americans.
So in that sense, yes, I believe a great number of liberal politicians, journalists, and academicians think it would not be so bad if the US failed, pulled out of Iraq, repealed the anti-terror legislation that followed 9/11, and accepted their own liberal critique for such failure. As far as the recognition that thousands of Americans have died in Afghanistan and Iraq for the idea of offering an alternative other than jihadism and dictatorship that would enhance the security of the region and of the United States, I think it just doesn’t register against the “higher good” brought on by withdrawal and admission of defeat.
To this wisdom I would add that “withdrawal and admission of defeat” is the definition of surrender.
1. acceptance of despair [syn: resignation]
2. a verbal act of admitting defeat [syn: giving up]
3. the delivery of a principal into lawful custody
4. the act of surrendering (usually under agreed conditions); “they were protected until the capitulation of the fort” [syn: capitulation]
1. give up or agree to forgo to the power or possession of another; “The last Taleban fighters finally surrendered” [ant: hold out]
2. relinquish possession or control over; “The squatters had to surrender the building after the police moved in”“surrender.” WordNet® 3.0. Princeton University. 02 Aug. 2007. <Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/surrender>.
Those who propose the US retreat from Iraq and admit defeat actually are proposing the US should surrender. This is no distortion of their position. It is an accurate description using dictionary definitions of the words they use.
As is obvious from the definitions of surrender above, another feature of surrender is that it is an acceptance of despair. Despair is not only a mortal sin, it is also the weakest of all emotions. Sick people who despair are much more likely to die. People facing financial troubles who despair are much more likely to become permanently poor. Despair is giving up. It is capitulation. It is the death of the will and the precursor to death of the body.
The American Left still has a path that can lead them out of the desolate abode of despair in which they are trapped. In fact it would be slick enough it would be worthy of Bill Clinton and would reveal that (surprise) they actually are responsible for the success of the Baghdad Security Plan and the Surge.
Here is how it works.
In 2006, before the elections that the Democrats won on the corruption issue, they were demanding four things from Iraq: A new secretary of defense; A new strategy; a new general; and more troops. Rumsfield resigned within a week of the elections, to be replaced by Gates. The strategy of drawing troops down while leaving the Iraqis to do all the security themselves was changed to the active security plan known as the Baghdad Security Plan, Anbar Awakening, and the operations of the Belts. Casey was replaced by Petraeus. And the Surge added about 35,000 combat troops and even more support personnel, most of them Iraqi and American contractors.
The Democrats got everything they wanted, and now the strategy they demanded is winning in Iraq!
And if it weren’t for the despairing peacemonger chorus led by useful idiots like Cindy Sheehan and Code Pink, and the despairing media led by the AP and Reuters with their obsessive-compulsive focus on US body count only, with every other aspect of the war being treated as irrelevant, then the Democrats would have realized that far from being hopeless, the situation has actually become quite good for the country, and for them!
Finally, in honor of the last Harry Potter book, it’s Whammy time.
Let this thought penetrate ’em.
Democrats can claim that the success of the Surge was their own idea! And you know what? They’d be right!
May the Democrats accept their inner winner and throw that old despairing loser personality over a cliff somewhere.