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Democrat's war policy: they win; we lose

By Henry Lamb
web posted May 7, 2007

It probably should not come as a surprise, since many of the same people did the same thing during the Vietnam war, but it certainly is a sad commentary on the state of political affairs  when a presidential candidate stands before a cheering crowd and calls for the defeat of American forces in the midst of war.

Barack Obama told his admirers that "we are only one signature away from ending this war."  And the people cheered.  He is actually saying, "we are only one signature away from waving the white flag of surrender."  Should the president accept the Democrat's demand for a date-certain schedule for withdrawing American troops, it would be a national declaration of defeat - and a national disgrace.

This disgraceful sentiment rests not on Obama's shoulders; he is simply playing to the crowd that already wants to surrender, regardless of the consequences.  Senator Harry Reid, the highest-ranking Democrat in the Senate, has already declared that "the war is lost."  Congressman John Murtha is trying to convince people that once American forces surrender, the natives will quit fighting, and all will be well in the world.

What happened to Ronald Reagan's policy during the cold war: "...we win, they lose."  America's - indeed, the world's war against terrorism - is as real, and as dangerous as the cold war was a generation ago.   If  Democrats get their way, America's policy to be: "...they win, we lose."

Many of the people who line up behind the Democrat's position are so blinded by their hatred for George Bush, that they cannot see dangers that would certainly arise in the aftermath of America's premature withdrawal from Iraq.  Any sincere appraisal of the consequences of America's premature withdrawal would have to recognize that  Iraq would fall, once again, under the control of forces determined to destroy America, whether Sunni, Shia, or al-Qaida.

The new controlling power would likely be worse than Saddam Hussein, and definitely a greater threat to America and her allies.   Iraq would become the new pre-war Afghanistan - the center for training terrorists.  With Syria to the West and Iran to the East, the entire region could easily fall to the dominance of Islamic extremists.

Nearly 11 million Iraqis said they wanted a representative government based on the Constitution they wrote.  This is an undeniable display of the desires of the Iraqi people.  It is the Islamic extremists who realize that their power cannot survive, nor their fantasies be realized, under this kind of representative government.  But the desires of the people cannot survive, nor their dreams realized,  under the scourge of Islamic extremism.  American coalition forces are the only hope Iraqis have to achieve the freedom for which they so bravely voted.

George Bush may well deserve criticism for the way the war has been conducted; his vision, and his goal, however, should be applauded.   If, and it is a very big if, America can hold off the Islamaniacs long enough for the elected representatives to create a functioning government, civilization will move forward substantially.  On the other hand, if the Democrats succeed in forcing the premature withdrawal of American forces from Iraq, the defeat will set back civilization, and fan the flames of terrorism around the world. 

Capture Bush's vision of an Iraq with an elected representative government - an  American ally situated between Syria and Iran.  A government that does not have to contend with daily attacks of suicide bombers, and roadside bombs, could devote its resources to upgrading the infrastructure that Saddam let deteriorate.  Children could go to school.  Merchants could go to their markets - with a reasonable expectation of returning home safely.  People could begin to realize what it means to be free from Saddam's  despotic rule, and free from the maniacal militias that kill and maim for the benefit of America's TV audience. 

Were such a government to take root in the Tigris-Euphrates valley (the cradle of civilization), the fruits of  freedom would fall beyond the borders of Iraq.  Young Muslims would have an alternative to the hopeless cycle of Islamic extremism.  New freedoms could dispel the myth of martyrdom, as young Muslim boys  discover that even a kiss on the cheek of a real live girl is far better than the promise of 72 virgins - after the explosion.  

There is no way to calculate the benefits to the people, and to the world,  of an elected representative government functioning in Iraq.  Neither is there a way to calculate the pain, suffering, death and chaos of Iraq under the control of al-Qaida.   Democrats don't seem to be concerned about either of these outcomes.  Their only concern appears to be to see how fast America can surrender. ESR

Henry Lamb is the executive vice president of the Environmental Conservation Organization (ECO), and chairman of Sovereignty International.


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