Daily Wisdom

November 26, 2007

Dem Conundrum: Dealing With Success

The Democrats have been peddling defeat so long, they are now confronted with a new reality they have dreaded since turning to the path of surrender and failure... potential success in Iraq. It is simply amazing that the NY Times would publish a story suggesting that the Dems ought to be careful how they handle the situation. I mean, who would have ever thought you'd hear words like these...

As violence declines in Baghdad, the leading Democratic presidential candidates are undertaking a new and challenging balancing act on Iraq: acknowledging that success...

Advisers to Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama say that the candidates have watched security conditions improve after the troop escalation in Iraq and concluded that it would be folly not to acknowledge those gains...

While the Democratic candidates are continuing to assail the war - a popular position with many of the party's primary voters - they run the risk that Republicans will use those critiques to attack the party's nominee in the election as defeatist and lacking faith in the American military...

"If Iraq looks at least partly salvageable, it will be important to explain as a candidate how you would salvage it - how you would get our troops out and not lose the war. The Democrats need to be very careful with what they say and not hem themselves in," (said Michael E. O'Hanlon, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who is a supporter of Mrs. Clinton's)...

This is a delicate matter. By saying the effects of the troop escalation have not led to a healthier political environment, the candidates are tacitly acknowledging that the additional troops have, in fact, made a difference on the ground - a viewpoint many Democratic voters might not embrace...

Delicate indeed. How do you acknowledge success without acknowledging success? Well, you can shift the goal posts further away - a typical Democrat strategy. You can deny the importance of that success - another typical Democrat strategy. You can find something else to harp on - another (dare I say it?) Democrat strategy. So that's what you're seeing now and will see, ad nauseum.

Simply pathetic.

10 Comments:

At 11/26/2007 5:27 PM , Anonymous Elroy said...

Thanks to the White House, State Department and Pentagon, the goal posts have done nothing BUT move since the start of the war. Where are they now, according to you?

And why is it wrong to question just how important this is? Or how long it will last? Or what the long-term ramifications might be? Or een how it came about?

Have you heard of Steve Biddle? He's a Senior Fellow for Defense Policy – check him out here:
http://www.cfr.org/bios/2603/stephen_biddle.html

Anyhoo, he gave an interview the other day – here's waht happened:

Q. Well what do you attribute this whole change on the ground to? Is this due to what is called “the surge,” or good diplomacy by the U.S. military, or just luck?

A. All of those things have some role but I would put “luck” as probably the biggest.

Q.You mean the timing just happens to coincide with the Sunnis getting fed up with al-Qaeda?

A. Well, that’s a big part of it. A second major factor is the way in which al-Qaeda in Iraq has screwed up—it’s nice to know we’re not the only people who screw things up in Iraq.

See the rest here:
http://www.cfr.org/publication/14805/gauging_progress_in_iraq.html?breadcrumb
=%2Fbios%2F11603%2Fbarack_obama%3F
groupby%3D1%26page%3D1%26hide%3
D1%26id%3D11603

I dunno about you, but that doesn't really sound like a resounding tactical military success to me.

And how about this from the Brits about how come the violence in Basra has quietened down?

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/11/15/africa/ME-GEN-Iraq-Basra.php

Might I suggest that your glee in using this for partisan purposes blinds you to the realities of the situation. The adventure is not over yet.

Cheers

Elroy

PS Have you come to terms with the fact that the new US Embassy in Baghdad really IS bigger than the Vatican?

 
At 11/27/2007 1:34 AM , Anonymous camojack said...

At the risk of repeating myself:
"Success in Iraq may just win the Presidential election for the Republicans next year..."

 
At 11/27/2007 7:48 PM , Blogger Hawkeye® said...

Elroy,
Could you repeat that please? I can't hear you because I'm "blinded to the reality of the situation".

(:D)

 
At 11/27/2007 7:49 PM , Blogger Hawkeye® said...

Camo,
Is there an echo in here... in here... in here...

(:D)

 
At 11/27/2007 8:13 PM , Blogger Elroy said...

Repeat myself? Sure!

Thanks to the White House, State Department and Pentagon, the goal posts have done nothing BUT move since the start of the war. Where are they now, according to you?

And why is it wrong to question just how important this is? Or how long it will last? Or what the long-term ramifications might be? Or een how it came about?

Have you heard of Steve Biddle? He's a Senior Fellow for Defense Policy – check him out here:
http://www.cfr.org/bios/2603/stephen_biddle.html

Anyhoo, he gave an interview the other day – here's waht happened:

Q. Well what do you attribute this whole change on the ground to? Is this due to what is called “the surge,” or good diplomacy by the U.S. military, or just luck?

A. All of those things have some role but I would put “luck” as probably the biggest.

Q.You mean the timing just happens to coincide with the Sunnis getting fed up with al-Qaeda?

A. Well, that’s a big part of it. A second major factor is the way in which al-Qaeda in Iraq has screwed up—it’s nice to know we’re not the only people who screw things up in Iraq.

See the rest here:
http://www.cfr.org/publication/14805/gauging_progress_in_iraq.html?breadcrumb
=%2Fbios%2F11603%2Fbarack_obama%3F
groupby%3D1%26page%3D1%26hide%3
D1%26id%3D11603

I dunno about you, but that doesn't really sound like a resounding tactical military success to me.

And how about this from the Brits about how come the violence in Basra has quietened down?

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/11/15/africa/ME-GEN-Iraq-Basra.php

Might I suggest that your glee in using this for partisan purposes blinds you to the realities of the situation. The adventure is not over yet.

Cheers

ElroThanks to the White House, State Department and Pentagon, the goal posts have done nothing BUT move since the start of the war. Where are they now, according to you?

And why is it wrong to question just how important this is? Or how long it will last? Or what the long-term ramifications might be? Or een how it came about?

Have you heard of Steve Biddle? He's a Senior Fellow for Defense Policy – check him out here:
http://www.cfr.org/bios/2603/stephen_biddle.html

Anyhoo, he gave an interview the other day – here's waht happened:

Q. Well what do you attribute this whole change on the ground to? Is this due to what is called “the surge,” or good diplomacy by the U.S. military, or just luck?

A. All of those things have some role but I would put “luck” as probably the biggest.

Q.You mean the timing just happens to coincide with the Sunnis getting fed up with al-Qaeda?

A. Well, that’s a big part of it. A second major factor is the way in which al-Qaeda in Iraq has screwed up—it’s nice to know we’re not the only people who screw things up in Iraq.

See the rest here:
http://www.cfr.org/publication/14805/gauging_progress_in_iraq.html?breadcrumb
=%2Fbios%2F11603%2Fbarack_obama%3F
groupby%3D1%26page%3D1%26hide%3
D1%26id%3D11603

I dunno about you, but that doesn't really sound like a resounding tactical military success to me.

And how about this from the Brits about how come the violence in Basra has quietened down?

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/11/15/africa/ME-GEN-Iraq-Basra.php

Might I suggest that your glee in using this for partisan purposes blinds you to the realities of the situation. The adventure is not over yet.

Cheers

Elroy

 
At 11/27/2007 8:21 PM , Blogger Hawkeye® said...

Elroy,
OK. You do have a sense of humor after all... Good.

 
At 11/27/2007 9:47 PM , Blogger Hawkeye® said...

Elroy,
Oh by the way. Biddle sounds like a smart guy, but I don't agree with him in this case. I think there was more to the turn-around in Iraq than just dumb luck. I think that will be the subject of my next article.

Oh, and about the Vatican? I was there. It's not that big really. The U.S. embassy in Baghdad is comprised of 21 buildings reinforced to 2.5 times usual standards. Some walls as said to be 15 feet thick or more. The installation is not only the largest, but the "most secure" diplomatic embassy in the world, and will employ 1,000 or more U.S. government officials.

In order to provide security, in addition to the main embassy buildings, there is a large-scale U.S. Marine barracks, a warehouse, and a vehicle maintenance garage. Water, electricity and sewage treatment plants will all be independent from Baghdad's city utilities. There are six apartment buildings with a total of 619 one-bedroom units for employee housing. Even in the event of a siege, U.S. employees should be safe and self-sustaining for quite some time.

 
At 11/28/2007 9:55 AM , Blogger Maggie said...

Maggie was here!

 
At 11/28/2007 7:12 PM , Blogger Hawkeye® said...

Maggie,
Hi! How ya doin'? Thanks for stoppin' by. Good to hear from ya.

(:D) Best regards...

 
At 12/01/2007 1:13 AM , Anonymous elroy said...

What's not that big? The Vatican or the Embassy?

The Embassy is bloody huge, bloody gigantic compared to any other, bloody absurd for a country that the US intends to leave and, apparently, nowhere near big enough!

But they are leaving, right? Y'know, when the Iraqis stand up etc etc? Aren't they ? Huh? Wasn't that the, uh, plan? Y'know, it's like the old joke where the bear says 'I don't think you're in this fer the huntin'.'

But tell me, my absolute favorite neo-con, what do you make of Rove's assertion that Congress forced the WH into war? An, er, interesting reading of history, don't you think? And what is rove telling us? That the war was a mistake? What do you think?

Cheers

Elroy

 

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