Saturday, April 29, 2006

A winger spat

There are few things funnier than when wingers have a falling out. The tears, the recriminations, the regrets; it’s all there. It’s like two teenagers falling out of love. Usually one person moves on, and the other remains, bitter, testy, and forlorn. And so it is with Andrew Sullivan and Johnny Rocketseed. They used to be so close. Here’s Johnny then:
As the Trunk notes below, Andrew Sullivan has urged readers to read David Kay's report in its entirety and has argued that it vindicates President Bush's case for war. Andrew convinces me that he would make an excellent press secretary for President Bush; beyond that, his [presumably Kay’s] case just doesn't wash. [italics are Spot’s]

And here’s Johnny now:
Defeatism, From One of the Usual Suspects

Andrew Sullivan reviews current data from Iraq, and concludes:

They're grim. 100,000 families have so far forced to flee their homes; U.S. fatalities were sharply up in April; 8,300 civilian Iraqis were murdered by terrorist insurgents in 2005. In terms of civilian deaths, adjusted for population size, Iraq endured something like twenty-five 9/11s last year. Let's put it another way: a territory controlled by U.S. forces accounted for 50 percent of deaths caused by terrorists on the planet last year. If that is a successful military occupation, then I'm not sure what failure would be. I guess I should ask Powerline.

In fact, though, the numbers cited by Andrew prove little about whether our effort in Iraq is a success or a failure. The spike in casualties in April was an interruption in a long-term trend of steadily declining American and Iraqi casualties. This is consistent with the terrorists' historical practice of ramping up violence whenever the Iraqis are about to take a new step toward democracy: electing a constitutional assembly, electing a legislative assembly, choosing a government. Once again, the terrorists' violence failed. Iraqi politicians have agreed on a new Prime Minister who is in the process of forming the first democratically elected government in the history of the Arab world.

The fact that half of all deaths caused by terrorists last year were in Iraq is consistent with what the terrorists themselves often tell us: Iraq is the central front in the global war against Islamic terrorism. The old Andrew Sullivan would have understood that this means we should fight to win in Iraq, not cut and run.

Johnny continues:
So it will be a while before we can render a verdict on the policy President Bush set in motion in 2003. As I've said before, I think it is more likely than not that history will judge our effort a success. In the meantime, engaging in defeatist hysteria every time the terrorists pull off a successful bombing is neither helpful nor analytically accurate.

Johnny reminds Spot of those old Japanese soldiers they used to find hiding in the jungles of the Philippines decades after World War II ended.

Tags: doesn't know that the is already lost

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