A refusal to see failure on it's face
Dead With Ned
Why Lamont's victory spells Democratic disaster.
By Jacob Weisberg
Posted Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2006, at 3:33 PM ET
Democrats are poised to re-enact a version of the Vietnam-era drama that helped them lose five out six presidential elections between 1968 and the end of the Cold War.
The election was about one issue and one issue only: the war in Iraq. Joe Lieberman was an otherwise highly regarded, well-ensconced Democratic incumbent who would never have faced a meaningful primary challenge had he not vocally supported President Bush's invasion in 2003, continued to defend the war in principle, and opposed adopting a timetable for withdrawal. Ned Lamont, a preppy political novice from Greenwich, got the idea to run last year when something he read in the Wall Street Journal made him gag on his breakfast. It was a hopeful analysis of Iraq by Lieberman. As a candidate, Lamont was less a fleshed-out alternative to Lieberman than a stand-in for an anti-war, anti-Bush movement. His campaign was made plausible by Web-based "Net roots" activists who cared principally about the war in Iraq and badgered Lieberman mercilessly about his support for it.
. The problem for the Democrats is that the anti-Lieberman insurgents go far beyond simply opposing Bush's faulty rationale for the war, his dishonest argumentation for it, and his incompetent execution of it. Many of them appear not to take the wider, global battle against Islamic fanaticism seriously. They see Iraq purely as a symptom of a cynical and politicized right-wing response to Sept. 11, as opposed to a tragic misstep in a bigger conflict. Substantively, this view indicates a fundamental misapprehension of the problem of terrorism. Politically, it points the way to perpetual Democratic defeat.
If Weisberg had read Stanley Karnow's history of Vietnam, too much heavy lifting for a Beltway pundit, he would have found, as Keith Nolan Miller, a reader of this blog, btw, and Ronald Spector all said, the US was winning in 1968. The NVA was in a process of losing battles from Tet to Dong Ha over a brutal six month period, and would not subside until the spring of 1969.
Between the successful Free World offensives, the FW forces under South Korea and Austrialia, had the NVA/VC in total retreat, and the US forces was pushing them to the limit.
The problem was that Westmoreland had lied about the strength and nature of NVA forces, and thus Tet was a total and complete shock, and shouldn't have been. The 4th and 25th ID's had been butting up against strong NVA formations for months, September 1967-January 1968, the period depicted in the film Platoon.
Weisberg does not understand that this isn't the position here. Or that the reason we left Vietnam was that the morale of the Army collapsed in the field.
We are not winning in Iraq. Iraqi forces are more danger than ally. The US does not control the day, forget the night. Guerrillas are the law in several cities, and parts of Baghdad. While Mr. Weisberg may shit the bed about "Islamic terrorism" he seems not to understand that the Bush warmaking policy seems to benefit one group, and they are sitting in a mosque in Tehran.
You would think there was a Colonel Redl in the Pentagon, directing failure after failure for his masters in Tehran.
1) The rise of Hezbollah against a frustrated IDF.
If you wanted to rehabilitate a terrorist organization, Bush and Olmert have done it. They are the new fashion in the Arab world. The men who stopped the IDF.
2) The Iraqi government
Owned lock, stock and barrel by Iran
The Taliban will keep the US off balance for years because too few troops are there. They get brigades, they need a couple of divisions.
The US will leave Iraq humiliated. That is certain. Whether they leave by negotiations or a fighting Chosin-like retreat is the only real debate.
Ned Lamont and many Dems are NOT 60's style anti-war activists. They reject the inept Finland War type management of the threats we face. If Weisberg thinks secret prisons, a gulag in the sun and torture work, he must love the NKVD.
Liberals want a winning, workable war strategy, a military where free citizens can enlist, do their time and not be stop lossed, and the end to reenforcing failure. It is only a matter of time before the occupation government of Iraq collapses and full on civil war occurs. We need to send forces to Afghanistan to close off the border and hunt down the Taliban.
The IDF needs to take a deal before they take more losses from Hezbollah, who have planned for this attack for six years.
In short, we need to stop helping Iran achieve hegemony over the middle east.
posted by Steve @ 11:26:00 AM