Kerry: Success Doesn't Matter
"I think the general will present the facts with respect to the statistics and the tactical successes or situations as he sees them," Kerry said. "But none of us should be fooled — not the American people, not you in the media, not us in Congress — we should not be fooled into this tactical success debate."So tactical success is now off the table? When did that happen?
If tactical success is not a valid measure of success in Iraq, then, as predicted here earlier, the Dems have met the Surge with their own retreat, away from a military measuring stick to pegging our success on Iraqi governance milestones, which now appear to be their sole measure of success in the war.
Hence the deliberate and flawed GAO report.
Against this defeatist surge, the forces of light have this, from McCain and Lieberman in today's WSJ:
We hope that opponents of the war in Congress will listen carefully to the evidence that the U.S. military is at last making real and significant progress in its offensive against al Qaeda in Iraq.They're thinking like I'm thinking, adding:
Unfortunately, many more antiwar advocates continue to press for withdrawal. Confronted by undeniable evidence of gains against al Qaeda in Iraq, they acknowledge progress but have seized on the performance of the Iraqi government to justify stripping Gen. Petraeus of troops and derailing his strategy.They detail many flaws in this Kerryesque approach, the most prominent being the idea that an impending deadline will somehow shock the Iraqi government into getting its act together. There is no evidence supporting the argument. Indeed, every previous U.S. debate about withdrawing has been underscored by increased violence in Iraq, as the forces of chaos try to encourage us to leave so there can be more chaos.
Whatever fantasy land Kerrykind may be living in, it is clear than an impending U.S. departure will serve only to prepare the militant forces for the bloodshed that will follow.
It is also clear that the best chance the Iraqi government has to succeed is to have a strong U.S. cover that is knocking off the terrorists and militants, so the factions that want peace and reconciliation can become the dominant factions. The bonus of taking this approach is that we and our increasingly capable Iraqi allies get to kill as many jihadist terrorists as possible, all in the name of Democracy in the Middle East.
McCain and Lieberman close their piece on an optimistic note:
The Bush administration finally had the courage to change course in Iraq earlier this year. After hearing from Gen. Petraeus today, we hope congressional opponents of the war will do the same.Unfortunately, there is no evidence to support the contention that Kerry, Schumer (who, interestingly comes up in spell-check as "schemer"), Reid, Pelosi, the Dem Prez Wannabees and all the others will harken to this call to reason. After all, they don't want to be fooled into a tactical success debate.