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|Reality check for the naysayers
By Carol Devine-Molin
If President Bush is such a dunce, why is it that the frustrated bunch of sore losers known as the political Left can't outmaneuver him? The Left is obsessed with making political brownie points and garnering power, but when they come up against President Bush, they're consistently on the losing end. The president is a highly intelligent man and a strategic thinker, which has been thoroughly overlooked by the Leftist elites. But the Left's shortcomings are even more fundamental. The Left has miscalculated on most fronts because they really don't grasp basic human nature. Individuals want to be free, they want to control their own destiny, and hence it was inevitable that the Iraqis would cooperate with the democratic process and go for the vote, despite being confronted with considerable impediments such as violence and their own fear. Moreover, the Left seems to think that it can pound in their points by being obnoxious and angry. You can always spot a Leftist by their strident demeanor and overall pessimism that's not conducive to making new friends and influencing people. . Again, I'm sensing a theme here – the Left is clueless when it comes to understanding human nature. Senators Boxer and Kennedy seem to readily come to mind.
And, it's not confusion or misunderstanding that lead many Americans to believe that the Left is anti-American and anti-military. Frankly, these are common traits of the Left, which manage to manifest quite nicely among media elites and many Democratic politicos. They don't call the political Left the "Blame America First" crowd for nothing. Maybe I really shouldn't be giving these pointers to the Left, but not to worry; it's not going to help them anyway. I read and re-read Senator Ted Kennedy's recent speech delivered at the Johns' Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies regarding an Iraq "exit strategy" and, unquestionably, Kennedy was in the Twilight Zone – just out of touch with reality regarding most of his assertions. Some might think that wet brain has set in. For illustrative purposes, I'll just pick off two main points. Kennedy claimed: "First, the goal of our military presence should be to allow the creation of a legitimate, functioning Iraqi government, not to dictate it". While I agree with the first part of the sentence, the last four words are absurd. Our military is not dictating to the Iraqis, and the allegation is patently insulting toward our troops. And Kennedy also states: "Second, for democracy to take root, the Iraqis need a clear signal that America has a genuine exit strategy". That's a bit of gobbledygook, by my estimation. But more to the point, President Bush has already articulated an exit strategy. The President has made it clear that we're going to finish training the Iraqi security forces, and then withdraw. You don't give the enemy a heads-up as to the exact time of your troop withdrawal – That's common sense. However, this administration has also said that if the Iraqi government wants our troops out right away, then we'll leave right away. To refute the Kennedy speech point by point would be an extensive undertaking, so I'll leave it there.
Now let's focus upon the historic Iraqi election of January 30, 2005. It's been the ongoing mantra of the political Left that: a) elections in Iraq couldn't be pulled off, given the disruption of the "insurgency", and, b) the Iraqis really didn't want democracy; they just wanted American "occupiers" out of Iraq as soon as possible. Negativity, interspersed with outright nastiness, is the name of the game for Left-wingers. They've been the "doom and gloom" bunch that disseminated the "big lie" that President Bush's foreign policy was bound to fail. Sure, it was Leftist propaganda, but it was also wishful thinking on the part of these dolts. To listen to them, our troops were the cause of the strife in Iraq, rather than a force for good that had liberated the Iraqis, fought off the evildoers on a daily basis, and continued to provide Iraqi security personnel with training. But lo and behold, the Leftists are being proven wrong once again. This first election in Iraq has just transpired and has been a major triumph for liberty. It's where the rubber met the road, despite Senator John Kerry's attempts to downplay the election's significance. Here's the real deal: President Bush has demonstrated that he could bring a fledgling democracy to Iraq. And, more even more importantly, the determination of the Iraqi people to cast their votes has spoken volumes. The Left-leaning crowd is downright depressed because it also represents another Bush political victory. And for the Left, everything is about power and politics.
The polls closed in Iraq just a few hours ago, and although it will take approximately two weeks to tabulate complete election results, it appears that at least 60 percent of eligible voters got out to the polls. That's a "resounding success" as noted by President Bush, considering the level of intimidation and violence aimed at the Iraqi populace, including systematic murders via car bombings and suicide bombers. And, of course, we never expected the Sunnis to vote in numbers approaching those of the other main Iraqi groups, the Shiites and the Kurds. The Sunnis had a considerable stake in the old Ba'athist system, and many were loathe to see Saddam removed. Moreover, it was Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, al-Qaeda's chieftain in Iraq, who had declared a "fierce war" on democracy, aided and abetted by foreign terrorists and Ba'athist insurgents that continue to perpetrate guerrilla strikes upon the Iraqis and coalition forces. Granted, security was tight during Iraq's first real election in over fifty years, but, unfortunately, the evildoers were able to murder 30 or more. It's a real testament to the courage of the Iraqi people who persevered and voted.
No doubt about it, the Iraqis are now jazzed to continue with the process of democracy. The Iraqis understand the monumental implications of the election, and their morale is excellent despite the perilous landscape. Think about it – most major media are finding it rather difficult to get journalists (85-90 percent of whom are Left-wingers) to do lengthy tours of war coverage in Iraq, according to Howard Kurtz on CNN. Clearly, few journalists want to cover Iraq up-close and personal because of the fear factor. No wonder journalists remain disengaged with what's really happening "on the ground" as they say. Yet, the Iraqis people, and the coalition forces beside them, are dealing with terror attacks on a daily basis. That said, it's absolutely awful how a UN official cast aspersions on our troops for being too enthusiastic about the elections. Well, of course, our troops believe in the cause of democracy in Iraq and it manifests as enthusiasm. I'm sure most Americans don't appreciate a UN apparatchik carping about our heroic soldiers.
To continue on the subject of the Iraqi election, there's nothing like history in the making and the eyewitness accounts of those on the scene. The people of Iraq have clearly demonstrated that they seek to embrace democracy. That said, it's only fitting that we peruse the latest entries of intrepid Iraqi bloggers who have memorialized their observations and thoughts on the election of January 30, 2005 – an event that constitutes the first major step toward democracy for Iraqis.
At the "Iraq, The Model" blogspot, Mohammed and Omar noted: "The sounds of explosions and gunfire were clearly heard, some were far away but some were close enough to make the windows of the center shake but no one seemed to care about them as if the people weren't hearing these sounds at all. I saw an old woman that I thought would get startled by the loud sound of a close explosion but she didn't seem to care, instead she was busy verifying her voting station's location as she found out that her name wasn't listed in this center… I walked forward to my station, cast my vote and then headed to the box, where I wanted to stand as long as I could, then I moved to mark my finger with ink, I dipped it deep as if I was poking the eyes of all the world's tyrants. I put the paper in the box and with it, there were tears that I couldn't hold; I was trembling with joy and I felt like I wanted to hug the box but the supervisor smiled at me and said ‘brother, would you please move ahead, the people are waiting for their turn'".
Ah, it's a pity how the mundane often intrudes on moments of profundity. In contrast, the words of Hammorabi Sam represent a cacophony of emotions: He's celebratory, thankful, and even brash, in response to the pivotal event. At the Hammorabi blogspot, Hammorabi Sam shares his thoughts on the Iraqi election: "Great day! It is the birth of freedom and democracy in Iraq! It is a great festival! Today only we may announce the victory! Today we hit back in the heart of the terrorists and the tyrants! Today is the day in which the souls of our martyrs comforted! Today those who were killed in Iraq or wounded among our friends from the USA and other allies, who helped us to reach this day, are with us again to inscribe their names with Gold forever! Today we challenged the killers and terrorists and foot on them with our shoes!...As we expected, the enemies of God and freedom send their mentally retarded cockroaches in some suicidal attacks. On the top of our privileged today are those who were killed in their way for voting. Their names should be perpetuated forever! Their names should be written in Gold in Al-Fordos Square in Baghdad! Our thanks go to George W Bush who will enter the history as the leader of the freedom and democracy in the recent history! He and his people are our friends forever! God bless Iraq and America". Personally, I just love the ring to the phrase, "foot on them with our shoes!". Yes, I'll have to use that one.
Carol Devine-Molin is a regular contributor to several online magazines.
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