Agam's Gecko
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
'Okinawa' Jack Murtha
'Okinawa' Jack Murtha Photo: Hot Air

ot quite, but almost. Once Madame Speaker Pelosi gets this apparent model for Grandad Simpson into leadership, it will be full steam ahead. "Forward, to Okinawa!"

Who could not feel sympathy for the Iraqi people right about now, after they have accomplished so much while undergoing constant attacks of butchery from terrorists and Ba'athist resurrectionists? How can there be any question as to which is the good side in this epic struggle, between a society striving for stability and development vs. those few fanatics who indiscriminately slaughter the innocent by the thousands, as a tool to crush that society's aspirations? Who is callous enough to write them off to suffer whatever ugly fate awaits them, should the world now turn its collective back?

At the end of my last post, having cited some admirable Iraqi patriots, I wrote, "Shame on those who would turn their backs on you now." All that remains is to see exactly who will shame themselves, in an apparent Democrat push for 'defeat with honour.'

Iraq is not Vietnam, Iraq hasn't been Vietnam, but some Americans are evidently determined to turn it into Vietnam while they have the chance. For some, it seems, success is not an option. For most of the virtually one-party media, any evidence of success must be buried, or at least must appear beneath relentlessly negative headlines. Any hints of success might accidentally reflect well upon President Bush, and any eventual overall success would be a disaster for these people (political, media or armchair revolutionary), in that it could conceivably vindicate him. Which, of course, must be opposed at any cost. Too bad for those idealistic Iraqis (the vast majority) who just want a normal country. Too good for the shadowy underground groups of thugs, who kill either for Allah or Saddam, and who played the US opposition party / establishment media like a fiddle.

But for now we can watch and listen as the new legislative power, possibly under 'Okinawa' John's direction, reveals its plan. This plan, as near as I can decipher, revolves around the existence of a plan to call for serious planning work to be done, presumably in the form of strategy meetings on how to get a plan, and possibly planning meetings on how to define a new strategy. It's quite a clear plan, and nothing like that old 'support Iraqis and train up their own security, so they can stand on their own' deal -- which, as Murtha always reminds us, is an "enigma, covered in coconut, and wrapped in an illooooosion." Or something.

Yes indeed, this fresh and workable plan sounds very effective... or at least I'm sure it will, once we find out what it is. It has a great new name, which is a good start. "A NewD irection for America" -- oops, did I do that?
"What's all this I hear about the Democrats wanting a newd irection for America? Why, this would be worse that all that violins on TV! And didn't they get enough newd irections with President 42? I think they should get off this irection stuff, and get back to..."

"Emily, that's New Direction for America, not NewD irection. New Direction."

"Oh. Well, that's very different then. Never mind."
Ahem. Well, a cool new name for the planning process to plan to have a plan, is only just the beginning. A possible plank in the plan, now that Rumsfeld is out of the way, is to get John Bolton out of the UN. Maybe the masses won't notice how effective he's been during his few months at Turtle Bay, shepherding a number of important unanimous or nearly unanimous UNSC resolutions through the system, being the most compelling voice for UN reform in its history, and generally being the best ambassador I can remember. But under the New Direction, Bolton and his moustache must go.

From where I sit, John Bolton's forthrightness was a new direction from what came before, a refreshing change for which the corrupt and ponderously ineffective UN is in desparate need. But never mind -- he's the President's man, and therefore unacceptable. His successes reflect well on his boss, which is the most unacceptable thing of all.

The coming months should be a hoot -- as long as we can avoid looking at the repercussions. The New Direction, as nebulous as it is, promises to be (as AllahPundit might quip, and probably has) a target-rich environment. A new poll which I read about this morning shows less than 30% of Americans believe the Democrats actually have a plan for Iraq. Nearly 60% believe they don't, and the rest aren't sure. Since the plan has been, and remains a secret, that's a lot of trusting (or gullible) souls out there -- as well as a sizable proportion for whom absence of a plan was not important at all in deciding how to vote. Now that everyone is expectantly awaiting details of the New Alternative Plan, it will soon be time for the Dems to finally shoot, sh*t or slide for third. Or possibly all three, who knows?

It's a shame that US voters couldn't have been required to read Bill Whittle's latest before voting day. Actually, every time Whittle publishes a new essay (an unfortunately infrequent occurrence), it ought to just automatically go onto the front page of every daily paper in the English speaking world. Above the fold. I think that would help a lot.

Jim Treacher had the best concise post-election blog post.
  • Does this mean Bush is still Hitler? I'm pretty sure Hitler never let his opponents win an election, did he? Unless... this is all part of Rove's plan.

  • A major concern of the last few elections has been that Republicans need to cheat to win, and the problem was going to be even worse with the new Diebold machines. What happened? Did Cheney forget his password again? That darn Cheney, always forgetting his password.

  • What happened to Ned? I thought Lieberman was Public Enemy #1. Now Kos must feel like the kid on Christmas morning who's surrounded by toys... except for the one he really wanted.

  • Does Nancy Pelosi ever wear a fake flower on her lapel that shoots acid? Because that would really be a surprise for Batman when he's hauling her to Commissioner Gordon's office.

  • So the world likes us again, right? No more terrorism? YAY!!!
I also noticed that psychiatrists have not reported masses of conservatives seeking treatment for Post Election Stress Trauma (or whatever it was 2 years ago), and the Canadians haven't reported sharp increases of immigration applications from dejected election losers. Did Alec Baldwin come back home yet?

I will miss seeing Rumsfeld handling some of the clueless snipes who haunted his press conferences, using his patented martial artistry known as Don-Fu - the Rumsfeld Fighting Technique. It takes real talent to help some of the most handicapped partisans in the one-party media to actually see their own prejudices and biases entwined within their own silly questions, and to do it gently. That's entertainment that will be missed. Not to mention the committee hearings at which pompous blowhards like Biden and Levin would foam at him, to be deftly parried with more of that Don-Fu stuff:

Wai Hot Air for that. I've watched a lot of those press Q&A's with him, and either Gen. Pace, or Gen. Myers, or Gen. Casey alongside. I've also watched a lot of the committee hearings where he has testified (via C-SPAN - where one can watch the hearings that the Dems said never happened. "No oversight!"). They are so completely different than the bite-sized sentence fragments that passes for processed "news" product. I don't think anyone, outside of President Bush, has been so deformed by a media-driven caricature, swallowed whole by large swaths of the establishment-news consuming public. He's a very different personality when he's unedited, and it's too bad more people didn't get to see that. I always liked him for his straight talk, especially when he attempted to put tricky concepts into plain language -- for which he was often ridiculed by those too lazy to honestly consider what he was saying. Here is an alternative assessment of Rumsfeld that may surprise readers only familiar with the tightly edited Rummy. (Alternate source here.)

Hopefully during the next two years there will be enough responsible adults in place to prevent the worst outcome for the Iraqis. Some commentators, like my fellow Canadian David Warren, see the writing on the wall already. "If Iraq is abandoned, the credibility of America and the West is lost." The problem is that many in the "West" already want this. Warren touches on the 'creating Vietnam' meme, recalling that the willingness to fight a more ruthless enemy then, had evaporated.
Why did it evaporate? For the same reason then as now. The “alternative America”, ruling from its ivory towers in academia, the media, and the entertainment industry, could not understand why anyone should die for any cause at all; could not distinguish between freedom and tyranny; and instinctively sided with any enemy of what they fancifully imagined to be “American imperialism”.

My 21st birthday happened to coincide with the final evacuation of Saigon. From my modest experience on the ground in that country, I knew what was coming next. The boat people were no surprise to me. I think that was the day I fully realized, in adult terms, that evil often prevails in this world. So this is nothing new.

The fate that will befall all those millions of courageous Iraqis, showing the dye on their fingers after they had voted -- in defiance of all the terror threats -- will not come as a surprise to me, either. They are being sold out, as the Vietnamese were before them. But the consequences of abandoning Iraq will come home to the United States and the West, in a way Vietnam never touched us.
It wasn't only the Vietnamese who were sold out (on the presumption that a bloodbath wouldn't happen) by defeat with honour. The bloodbath did happen, with hundreds of thousands killed, hundreds of other thousands in re-education / concentration camps, and all those "boat people" -- remember them? The whole of Southeast Asia was given over to whatever might follow, including the Khmer Rouge horror which claimed millions.

Just before the 2004 election, I found this John Kerry statement, and posted it on this page. It comes from a 1971 debate between he and John O'Neill on the Dick Cavett Show.
The bigger issue at hand is the question literally of how the United States is going to get out of Vietnam now, and I have said again and again this evening that we can set a date, that we can bring the prisoners home, but the point is I think this administration is still seeking some kind of victory over there. It is still committed to the idea totally of a non-communist regime, and I think that that's unrealistic in terms of the political forces that are at play in South Vietnam. In fact, in all of Southeast Asia.
The latest Democratic standard-bearer had written off all of Southeast Asia to communism. No big deal. Anything else is unrealistic. See ya, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia.... wouldn't want to be ya! "Communism -- it's the wave of the future," he seems to be saying.

The enemies of freedom are already pointing to last week's election as a milestone on the road to repetition of history, confirmation of Osama's declaration of American impotence, the "weak horse" who ran from Vietnam, ran from Lebanon, ran from Somalia, etc. Iranian ayatollahs gloat over their electoral victory. The leader of al Qaeda in Iraq (or as some of us like to call them, al Qaeda, which has nothing to do with Iraq, in Iraq, which has nothing to do with al Qaeda) says the election is a good first step toward the Caliphate to come. The last step is blowing up the White House. TigerHawk has more.

There may be objections to pointing out the glee of our enemies, but the purpose is not to claim Democrat collusion with them. It's simply that the mullahs and jihadists had their favourites in the race, and they weren't shy about their pre-election lobbying activities. Or at least, they weren't shy about telling WorldNet about them. Muhammad Saadi is a senior leader of Islamic Jihad in the northern West Bank town of Jenin. Prior to the election he said the Democrats' talk of withdrawal from Iraq makes him feel "proud."
"As Arabs and Muslims we feel proud of this talk," he told WND. "Very proud from the great successes of the Iraqi resistance. This success that brought the big superpower of the world to discuss a possible withdrawal."
The global jihad already feels vindicated by its accomplishment, whatever happens next. These folks are very media-savvy, and know exactly what is being said by whom.
In a recent interview with CBS's "60 Minutes," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, stated, "The jihadists (are) in Iraq. But that doesn't mean we stay there. They'll stay there as long as we're there."


WND read Pelosi's remarks to the terror leaders, who unanimously rejected her contention an American withdrawal would end the insurgency.

Islamic Jihad's Saadi, laughing, stated, "There is no chance that the resistance will stop."

He said an American withdrawal from Iraq would "prove the resistance is the most important tool and that this tool works. The victory of the Iraqi revolution will mark an important step in the history of the region and in the attitude regarding the United States."
Lots more juicy terrorist quotes on that page. They have no plans to stop, regardless of US policy. They'll either be defeated, or they won't. Nancy now says it isn't a war, but a "situation." Three thousand people from 80+ countries who died on September 11 would roll over in their graves, if they had one.

It's a little bit shameful when Muslims can show more stick-to-it-iveness for the defeat of a plainly evil ideology, but so be it. Those who enjoy freedom have an easier time disregarding unpleasant truths when conflict is far away. If one pretends that the Iraqis are just hopeless at getting things together, and they're all just at each other's throats, it's much easier for some to write them off without more thought. It might shock some of these folks to hear an Iraqi Shiite cleric espousing secularism as an essential quality for his country. He's also a member of the Iraqi parliament, and he sounds tougher than Rumsfeld!

And here's another one. A former terrorist speaks forthrightly on the psychology of jihadist martyrdom. It's a frank discussion of the driving forces that make for willing suicide bombers, mainly revolving around sexual repression (something I've written on previously). But he is exasperated by willful Western foolishness:
"Stop asking what you have done wrong. Stop it! They're slaughtering you like sheep and you still look within. You criticize your history, your institutions, your churches. Why can't you realize that it has nothing to do with what you have done but with what they want."
Dr. Tawfik Hamid was trained under the Egyptian Ayman al-Zawahiri, bin Laden's jihad guru. He is warning us about imperialism -- but it isn't the imperialism that our ivory-tower intellectuals are always on about.

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