Wednesday, June 20, 2007

It's All About the Positioning.

There is an old saying, "Perception is reality." In Iraq, its never been truer.

In conversation with one who is rabidly anti-Bush/Iraq I was attempting to position my colleague to accept the notion that we should pull out of Iraq and claim victory, but this person would have none of that. For him, Iraq is a debacle in ruinous progress with no end in sight and a selfish murderous ambition of the President who himself is a colossal failure.

OK, you can have your grapes and eat it too. Mr. Bush doesn't show any inclination to defend himself, and I don't feel any obligation either.

However, I do think that there is a perception of events that the President's domestic opponents refuse to entertain, and in so denying this position, all the while unable or unwilling to provide an alternative reality that would herald the achievements of this war for and towards our nation's advantage, they expose the shallowness of their words of "I am a patriot, I support the troops. But not the war."

They can't have the War end with an elevated Bush! They'd much rather lose in Iraq, than accept the idea that our troops have done enough to claim victory, and thereby allow George Bush to claim achievement.

In fact this is putting pressure on Bush to continue until there is that moment when his critics turn and acknowledge success, its at that point that leaving Iraq is at its most appropriate. But it will never happen because Bush would gain platitudes, something his domestic opponents have never done since day one. That's the outcome we all should want however, expect, and require from the politicians -- Victory. But it seems unlikely that this will ever happen, and what good is that?

You or I may have doubts and opinions about all things Iraq, but the elected officials should be thinking a little deeper about national security, prosperity, and relevance. Quoting NBA Commissioner David Stern on this, "I'm going to wrestle with you on this," if you think the domestic opponents of Bush in D.C., who were elected to national government, have in our nations best interest to continue denigrating the administrations handling of affairs(to a point) and the success of the surge even.

Surely they have opinions, but if they think things are going wrong, do something more than snipping in the press, its harmful. Certainly.

Here is one truth that is, at this writing, undeniable. As goes Bush, so goes the country. The two are intertwined for the immediate future.

Bush's repute is tied directly to the success of the Iraq War, and thus the outcome of the Iraq War is either going to diminish or strengthen the United States in the world. Also this marriage will persist beyond the President's last days in office. Its reality, its true.

I suggest another truth, as defined on, being a patriot is marked by the love and support of the nations interest.

So like it or not, insisting on supporting the troops, but not the war while claiming to be a patriot is logically unsound.

If its unacceptable for Bush to win anything, neither will the nation. That's not a patriotic position and the only people who win are our enemies on the battlefield and the politicians who prosper at the cost of the country.

I'm not here to tell you your wrong in your position, I'm just trying to incite some thought. One can be against the war or not. Support the troops, or not. Be patriotic, or not. Or any combination of the three. Its your video, watch it however you want.

My perception of events is that we did what we had to do, and what we could do in Iraq. If we can't civilize or democratize these people, then we ought not to waste more resources on doing so. Our military did what its trained to do, and what it was asked to do originally. We have demonstrated strength where it matters most and its should be a trumpeted as a triumph. Frankly, we ought to be scaring the shit out of other rogue nations with the truth.

But here's the rub of the position that those who can't see Bush winning excrete on reality. The message of retreat and defeat that the domestic opponents of Bush are pushing only damages the nation. Consider this -- in an ever devolving effort to secure an unattainable recognition of triumph from the left, the President has to continue to put our resources to uses that are becoming increasingly unreasonable.

With every step down that sinkhole, or resolve weakens and the enemies of our state grow more emboldened. We are reaching the point where our strength becomes our weakness, our military will have to face the consequences on the battlefield, not the politicians who incite and encourage the perception that it is unpalatable for Bush to win.

Of course its not that easy to just pull out, and I have admittedly over simplified the message of claiming victory all the while laying an onus on the Iraqi's to act civilized. There is just too much investment in Iraq right now to expect total withdrawal, with or without a banner of glory.

But for the benefit of us all, I think some people ought to start seeing things in terms of the good of our nation, and what accolades come to Bush, so be it.

I'd like to see one of those politicians with all the criticism and fervent desires to quit the war, stand up for our interest and claim a victory first, then talk of withdrawal.

But they won't do that, because if the nation wins the war, then Bush will too. Oh what patriotism.

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