Tuesday, May 01, 2007

This Kind of News is Never the Lede

If 136 Iraqi civilians were killed in explosions today, the grisly news would be ubiquitous; every single media outlet would cover it, and it would saturate the airwaves. An estimated monthly casualty count of Iraqi civilian deaths for the month would be mentioned in the report, and U.S. military deaths for the day/week/month would be thrown in for good measure. The lame mainstream media has the formula down well.

Here's the rebuttal:

Operation Silicon launched in South: 136 militants killed in Afghanistan: NATO

SANGIN VALLEY: British troops swept into a Taliban stronghold lush with opium poppy fields on Monday, launching a new NATO operation in southern Afghanistan just as US-led forces reported killing 136 militants in the west.

But that was just the warm-up. Here is round two:

News You Won't Hear: Terrorism Is Down Almost Everywhere

On Monday evening, the State Department released its annual Country Reports on Terrorism showing a number of interesting findings, including steep declines in terrorist attacks and murders in many regions of the globe.

Shockingly, that was still just the warm up. How do you know when there really is progress on the ground in Iraq? When the New York Times finally reports it (albeit, a month after NPR and other major media outlets):

Uneasy Alliance Is Taming One Insurgent Bastion

RAMADI, Iraq — Anbar Province, long the lawless heartland of the tenacious Sunni Arab resistance, is undergoing a surprising transformation. Violence is ebbing in many areas, shops and schools are reopening, police forces are growing and the insurgency appears to be in retreat.

Ramadi, you say? Yes, Ramadi, once the most violent province in Iraq, as Bill Roggio pointed out. Bill Roggio continued to elaborate on events in the region:

General Petraeus outlined Iranian Qods Force's involvement with the February 20 attack on the Provincial Joint Coordination Center in Karbala, which led to the aborted kidnapping and subsequent murder of five U.S. soldiers. Qods Force armed, trained, and advised the Qazili network, which carried out the attack. U.S. forces detained several senior leaders of the Qazili network, and captured a "22-page memorandum on a computer that detailed the planning, preparation, approval process and conduct of the operation that resulted in five of our soldiers being killed in Karbala," said Gen. Petraeus.

Yet, these are only the highlights of the positive news from Iraq & Afghanistan in recent days. There have been many other encouraging developments, though. For example, as the TimesOnline reported, the 7/7 ‘mastermind’ is seized in Iraq. He is already safe and sound in Guantanamo Bay. (This is where the noble civil liberty lawyer types renew their calls for the prison to close. But as many have noted, as far back as a year ago, when we release the Guantanamo detainees, they head right back to the front).

Incredibly, despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary; mobilized troops, gun battles, deaths, fighting, fatwas, and more, John Edwards is somehow under the illusion that there is no war on "terror," as Ben Smith's Politico Blog reported. One can hardly be taken seriously as a Presidential candidate when one is in deep denial. Perhaps it is simply a case of inane casuistry, perhaps he is truly delusional, or perhaps he is pandering to his base. Likely the latter.

But his pandering should be no surprise, especially when those of his base utter the following:

The obvious reasons for the invasion of Iraq are the drive to ensure unfettered access to the oil of the region, and the strategic priority to protect Israel against any deterrence to its hegemony over the region. But secondary reasons for the war also include the determination to dissuade allies and competitors from aspiring to global leadership roles, to prevent the re-emergence of Russia as a rival superpower, and to discourage other powers from aspiring to challenge US domination. These are US strategic priorities spelled out in official documents prepared shortly after the end of the Cold War. The invasion and occupation of Iraq were supposed to demonstrate to friends and foes alike the awesome military might of the only superpower left in the world, as well as Washington’s readiness to use that power to impose its will.

Perhaps we should ask the Iraqi's how they feel?

Iraq anger as Senate votes for US troop withdrawal

IRAQ'S government yesterday criticised the US Senate vote to begin withdrawing American troops by October, saying it would mean their "sacrifices" would have been in vain.

It appears my fellow Democrats are all too willing to take the easy route; withdrawal. Despite their acrobatic efforts to appear at pains over the decision which they believe must be made, do not be fooled. This is cold, hard politicking - not principled decision-making. If Democrats were acting on principle, they would not willfully overlook any sign of progress in Iraq, they would not refuse to meet with General Petraeus, and they would not declare the war "lost" while our troops are still fighting and dying on the ground - not to mention the inaccurate hyperbole of the statement in and of itself.

I don't believe in the easy way out. I don't believe that we can walk away from this fight. I don't believe that al Qaeda has won. I don't believe the war is lost. I don't believe that Iraq is not a part of the war on terror. I don't believe Harry Reid has a clue about what he is talking about. I don't believe the Democrats want to deal with Iraq if one of them should be lucky enough to get elected. I don't believe it would serve the United States' interest to lose in Iraq and withdraw.

I believe Iraq must be reclaimed. I believe victory can be achieved. I believe the war in Iraq is a proxy war between the United States and al Qaeda, much like Vietnam was between the U.S. and Communist China & Russia. I believe a defeat (or withdrawal, according to Democrats), will embolden terrorists to step up their attacks and continue their fight throughout the region and spread their violent, hateful agenda west.

I believe Frank Miller is correct, and I agree with him:

"I'm ready," he said, "for my fatwa."

No comments: