Sunday, February 25, 2007

What happens next in Iraq will not be the measure of President Bush. It will be the measure of America.

Outstanding commentary by Gina Cobb:

...that there is a Higher Power to whom we owe our lives and our daily attention. When we say "I'm ready" to God and listen for guidance, good and wondrous things happen. Power is released on earth.
When we say "I'm ready" to our fellow human beings and genuinely give them our full attention, how blessed they are -- and us too! How do you feel when you are talking to someone who gives you only half their attention, or less? How do you feel when someone stops and listens to you intently? There is honor in full attention and focus.
There is no honor in pretending to do something important while actually doing nothing. It is worse than useless because it creates only the illusion of progress.
That's what Congress is doing with its "non-binding resolution" condemning America's strategy to prevail in Iraq. Congress is doing nothing and covering it up with an illusion of action.
I am not agnostic on what course Congress should choose when it comes to Iraq. It is crystal clear to me as a litigation attorney, and as a person of ordinary common sense, that there is no substitute for victory.
I also know when a battle is irretrievably lost and there is no choice but to negotiate terms. Iraq is not even remotely at that point. America is not remotely at that point. Who are we to crawl hat in hand to Iran and Syria, like Japan surrendering to America at the end of War II after the deaths of 2 million of its military personnel and 600,000 civilians? If we think we are hopelessly defeated after a few thousand deaths and a war whose practical effect on our economy is hardly even noticeable, we are kidding ourselves.

America has immense untapped reserves and is exceedingly strong -- except when we pretend that we are not. If we choose to surrender Iraq to terrorists and thugs, it will not be because we cannot win. It will be because we have let our whims of the day and year rule over our commitment, reason and foresight. If we allow our whims of this day and year to rule us, it will cost us dearly in the future. Enemies of freedom in the world will notice and remember.

Is our commitment to defeat despotism and terrorism conditional? Saddam Hussein's Iraq was a state sponsor of terrorism; and Iraq will be a hotbed of terrorism if America leaves too soon.
Is America in Iraq only until the going gets rough, or are we determined to stay as long as it takes to prevail, even if mountains fall and nations crumble to dust around us?
Will we leave Iraq a free, safe, democratic nation, or the kind of place where terrorists strut, preen, and murder innocent civilians at will?
How firm is our commitment? More to the point: What are we made of?
What happens next in Iraq will not be the measure of President Bush. It will be the measure of America.

I believe America still has the iron will to stand and fight and win in Iraq. President Bush has shown no sign of flinching in the face of terrorism. Our troops are not flinching, either.
There is only one force on earth that has any realistic chance of defeating America in Iraq. That force is the Democratic Party.

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