Cheat-Seeking Missles

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Quote Of The Day: Strategy Schmategy Edition

"Calling withdrawal an 'effective, successful strategy for Iraq' is like Karl Rove calling for Sen. Hillary Clinton to bow out of the presidential race one year from now as an 'effective, successful strategy' for Democrats to win the White House in 2008."
-- Sherman Frederick

Harry Reid comes under a withering barrage in his state's primary newspaper, thanks to Sherman Frederick's opinion column in today's Review Journal.

There is no logic available at Rationales 'R' Us to explain how telling the enemy you are cutting and running in 365 days is effective, can be successful, or for that matter, can be called a strategy for winning in Iraq. Don't strategies by definition have winning as a goal? Who's ever heard of a strategy for defeat?

Frederick rightly says that Harry Reid has every right in the world to change his position on the war from gung-ho to white-flag. It hasn't gone as hoped, so changes in strategy or support are well within reason. But Reid is using rhetoric to be "deliberately evasive" regarding his position on the war, and that "wears thin," Frederick says.

How thin? Well, just try getting through Reid's official statement upon passage of the bill John McCain called the "Date Certain for Surrender Act." As a public service, I have numbered and highlighted in brown the rhetoric that calls to mind the waste product of male bovines. Which do you think is worst?

"Today was a significant step forward in our efforts to [1] change course in Iraq and [2] make America more secure. With this vote the Senate is [3] giving our troops the resources they need in combat -- including a strategy in Iraq [4] worthy of their sacrifices. It is my hope that with this vote now complete, Senate Republicans will not stand in the way of finishing this bill so that we may get these [5] vital funds to our men and women as soon as possible.

"The president must [6] change course, and this legislation gives him a chance to do that. It gives him the chance to [7] more effectively fight terrorism and [8] redeploy our troops from a [9] civil war. This bill also gives the president the chance to address some of [10] our country's most urgent needs -- [11] long-ignored priorities including [12] veterans health care; [13] port, mass transit and airport security; and [14] rebuilding the Gulf Coast.

"The American people have asked us to give our troops [15] an effective, successful strategy for [16] victory in Iraq. Both houses of Congress have listened. It is now up to the president to do the same."

The most repulsive rhetoric for me is #4, calling the strategy behind this bill "worthy of the sacrifices" of our brave troops. What about leaving the fight unfought, to be fought at more cost at a later day, honors the sacrifices of those who have been killed or injured fighting terrorism? The sheer gall of the man!

Also interesting are the "long ignored priorities." "Long-ignored" is codeword for problems that began with W's watch and can't be pinned on the current Congress.

I don't recall any veterans care or Katrina spending bills being watered down or vetoed, so those are clearly red herrings. And the Dem desire to stop fighting wars and put more funding into transportation security is as solid a piece of evidence as you could hope for to prove that they still see terrorism as a law enforcement matter, not a military one. In Harry's world, terrorists are merely criminals to be arrested, not enemies to be defeated.

It's April 2007, so everything said by either party's leadership nowadays is 2008 campaign rhetoric. Reid has made it clear by his call for the President's fast action on the bill that he wants to troops home by the time we vote for the next president.

Should that occur, the Dems will probably win, because the war will be over and the bloody aftermath of their action -- in Iraq right away, and later, against American interests everywhere -- will not yet be visible. They are sacrificing our long-term future security in the name of a four-year presidential term.

OK, I take back what I said. Reid is outlining a strategy for victory ... but it's the wrong victory.

Hat-tip: Real Clear Politics

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