Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Barbarism or Civilization

The Moose decries the butchery of our enemies.

The killing and mutilation of our soldiers is a horrific reminder of the nature of our enemy. Whatever one thinks about the wisdom of going to war, we cannot allow this evil to prevail. There is a clear and unmistakable choice in Iraq. It is between a democratic government elected by millions of Iraqis who defied the terrorist threats, and the enemy that knows no moral constraints.

The Bush Administration has made grievous errors from the very beginning of the post-invasion period. The most disastrous mistake has been the lack of adequate troop levels. And even today we may need more troops to restore order particularly in Baghdad.

Unfortunately, with the exception of John McCain, no one is making that argument. Instead, much of the Democratic opposition has settled on one strategy - withdrawal now or soon. At a time when a democratic government is attempting to get on its feet, too many Democrats are yearning to saying good-bye and see ya later - fend for yourselves.

And let's be clear, "redeployment" is another nice euphemism for retreat.To leave now would hand the butchers who mutilated our troops a triumph that they cannot win on the battlefield. And it would embolden terrorists the world over just as our retreat from Mogadishu did a decade ago.

A few smart Democrats realize that. And some sensible, moderate Democratic Senators who plan to vote for the "withdrawal lite" resolution surely understand that abandoning Iraq would be disastrous. However, these Senators are bowing to pressures from the party's left to start leaving now. At the end of the day, this "half-way" house will neither satisfy the left nor sends the right message to our enemies. This is a day when the Senate should unite to pass a resolution committing the United States to stand by our allies and to hunt down the barbarians who butchered our troops. Instead, business will continue as usual.

Parenthetically, some on the left will offer the argument of moral equivalence that America tortures just as does our enemy. That is blasphemous and false. There is no earthly comparison between the misdeeds at Abu Ghraib and what was done to those two soldiers. Moreover, while American "torture" is a clear aberration, the terrorists employ the most heinous treatment as their standard method of operation. And, of course, don't expect the assorted human rights groups to express outrage about the Jihadists' killing and torturing of American troops.

Democrats have a political opportunity to critique the Administration's foreign policy from a hawkish perspective on issues ranging from troop strength in Iraq to appeasing the mullahs in Iran. It won't happen. Mort Kondracke put it well,

"It would be wonderful if some Democratic presidential candidate would join McCain in pressing Bush to add troops to ensure a victory in Iraq. Once upon a time, the Democratic Party had genuine hawks, including Presidents Harry Truman, John Kennedy, and Lyndon Johnson and Sens. Paul Douglas (Ill.) and Henry Jackson (Wash.). Nowadays, the remnants of that wing, such as Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.) and Rep. Jane Harman (Calif.), are lambasted by colleagues and risk the loss of their seats or committee posts."

Harry Truman has deservedly attained bi-partisan political sainthood. HST was a President who didn't flinch when he drooped the A bomb or committed troops in Korea. Would he recognize his beloved party which would retreat in the face of barbarity?

No, Harry would give them hell.
-- Posted at 8:15 AM | Link to this post | Email this post