Friday, March 28, 2008

Basra Will be Just Another Comma

As Scott writes:

troop levels MUST be determined by conditions on the ground, and not by political conditions at home. The entire strategy of an insurgent is to degrade the enemy’s will to fight-not the will of their frontline forces, but that of their supporting populations.
He points out that the British withdrawal from Basra and the subsequent increase in violence demonstrates that the withdrawal strategy doesn't work.

As Curt writes:
You can feel the utter joy coming from the writers at the NYT’s and the tabloid newspaper, Mclatchy, on their reporting of Iraq today. Joy at maybe, just maybe!, the Surge will fail and they can go back to blaming Bush. First, take a look at this doozy of a headline by Mclatchy, written by Leila Fadel and Ali al Basri:

“Battles Wrack Basra, Threatening Success of U.S. Surge.”
And as I wrote:
When the final history is written on Basra, this latest turn of violence will look like just a comma.
For the last 5 years, every step of the way, the media has gone into partisan hysterics for any signs of setbacks, for any show of difficulties, for any dark failure cloud attached to every silver lining of success. They highlight, underscore, embolden, circle, and magnify the negative while under-reporting and burying the positives. The sky is perpetually falling. And the molehill is perceived and propagandized to be a mountain that cannot be climbed.

And when all is finally said and done, in the end, I think history will vindicate the decisions of George W. Bush. And those who opposed him during these difficult times will have to rationalize it to their grandchildren. Those who stood by him when things were darkest, and kept their resolve in the face of so much BDS hysteric opposition, will be able to tell their grand kids how they stood on the right side of history.

One of the new liberal mantras has been to huff about how this Administration is going to leave it up to the next administration to "clean up their mess".

Here’s a juicy tidbit from the 2002 SotU Address that you can use the next time a liberal whines about it:
Our war on terror is well begun, but it is only begun. This campaign may not be finished on our watch- yet it must be and it will be waged on our watch

The fact of the matter is, life doesn't operate on a timeline that is dependent upon U.S. elections. Wars don't come with expiration dates and timetables. Each administration picks up where the previous one left off. I'm sure President Carter would have loved to have seen the resolution to the Hostage Crisis happen under his watch and not President Reagan's. And I'm sure if it wasn't for the 22nd Amendment, President Bush would have loved to see the war that the Islamists began (it didn't begin on his watch) ended on his watch. But given his age, I doubt President Bush has another 50 years in him, as the Decider or as a witness to the long war.

A lot of politicians kick the can down the curb, passing hot political potatoes off for future politicians to deal with. President Clinton did it to Bush 43 with the Kyoto Treaty. But this president has been different.

9/11 transformed President George W. Bush into someone who "thinks big". A fan of Winston Churchill (describing him as 'the best example of how individuals can shape history'), President Bush tried to tackle the big issues, head first.

I think the history books will remember George Bush's place in it as more than occupying just a footnote....or comma. Even if I am wrong about him being vindicated by historians as a good leader, there is no question that he has left an indelible imprint upon the pages of human history. His judicial appointments alone will affect the United States for generations to come.

For good or ill, his presidency mattered, and it is one that changed the landscape of the world to affect the course of human events, for generations to come. Even where he was unable to push through radical change, he clearly wanted to. Bogged down by Iraq, President Bush was unable to invest his political capital into such concerns as social security reform and tax simplification. But he was certainly thinking big. He was thinking "change".

President Bush has been a consequential president who made a dent in the course-flow of history. A leader who mattered; who made a difference. Who wasn't afraid of risk; who didn't concern himself with his popularity; who didn't make the big decisions based upon the fickle nature of the latest gallup polls.

And for that, love him or hate him, I contest that he has been a strong, effective leader.

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9 Comments:

Blogger Gayle said...

Wonderful post, Wordsmith. Kudos! I do believe that history will show him in a positive light. Of course there will always be those so-called historians who will not, simply of their political agenda, but sooner or later the truth will out; it always does.

Friday, March 28, 2008 10:54:00 AM  
Blogger Gayle said...

Woops! Left out "because" as in "because of their political agenda. Another case of my fingers not keeping up with my brain, which happens far to often.

Friday, March 28, 2008 10:56:00 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...

Great Post Word,

I agree completely.

History will show that President Bush was one of the strongest Presidents we ever had.

Friday, March 28, 2008 1:45:00 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

Here, here! Well done, Word.

Friday, March 28, 2008 8:04:00 PM  
Blogger Anna said...

Well done Wordsmith. Just imagine a world in which Al Gore is President and he chooses to keep fighting Global Warming even after the Twin Towers fall. That is where we could have been.

I linked back to this post in a post I just finished. Though you beat me to the punch, hope I can add some other dimensions to the discussion.

http://annapuna.blogspot.com/2008/03/long-bloody-war.html

Saturday, March 29, 2008 7:23:00 AM  
Blogger reddog said...

You may be right. It won't be the period at the end of the last sentence of the story but we can always hope.

Saturday, March 29, 2008 4:25:00 PM  
Blogger rockybutte said...

Word:

Consider Bush's signing statements attached to the most recent defense appropriations bill: "The president would not be bound by the law's prohibition against expending funds: "1. To establish any military installation or base for the purpose of providing for the permanent stationing of United States Armed Forces in Iraq" or, 2. "To exercise United States control of the oil forces of Iraq"

As I have mentioned before, I believe that the primary reason for Bush's invasion and occupation of Iraq was, and is, OIL.

Sunday, March 30, 2008 11:18:00 AM  
Blogger rockybutte said...

Typo: read "...oil fields..." not, "...oil forces...".

Sunday, March 30, 2008 2:42:00 PM  
Blogger Mike's America said...

Oh come on rockybutt. Only a complete fool thinks that!

If we went to Iraq to steal their oil how come we're paying over $100 a barrel for it? We've spent more U.S. dollars in Iraq than all their oil is worth.

P.S. Good piece by Jack kelly on Basra:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2008/04/getting_the_score_right_in_bas.html

Sunday, April 06, 2008 9:13:00 AM  

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