Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Shades of Politics Past

Did anyone happen to catch this on MSNBC the other day?

The utter lack of respect that Erin Burnett displays for a man who continues to keep her safe from terrorists is mind boggling.

Think it's a coincidence we haven't been hit again? Think again.

Unlike Bill Clinton, who treated terrorism as a law enforcement problem, after 9/11 George W. Bush recognized Al-Qaeda and the islamo-fascists for the global threat they were (and are). He realized the primary focus of his Presidency would be the fight against global terrorism, and he has acted accordingly.

In the six years since the attacks of 9/11, the United States has been quietly (and not so quietly), killing and capturing a lot of people who have needed killing and capturing. Consequently, Al-Qaeda's ability to conduct operations world-wide has been severely compromised.

Nevertheless, our adversaries remain exceedingly dangerous. They have demonstrated the patience and ability to bide their time, until the opportunity to strike presents itself. While they wait, we have to be ever vigilant, and we have to "get it right" every time. The terrorists only have to "get it right" once, in order to conduct a successful attack against us.

If Hillary is elected, get ready for a return to the old approach to fighting terrorism.

In case you've forgotten, Bill Clinton was too busy with "personal" matters to be bothered with something as trivial as fighting terrorism. Don't believe it? Check out this book by someone who was there.

Americans of all political stripes need to understand something - this war is a clash of cultures and will not be over in our lifetimes. Islamic radicals want to destroy Western civilization, take us back to the 7th century, and reinstate the Islamic Caliphate. They don't care whether we are Conservatives or Liberals, Democrats or Republicans. To them, the only thing that matters is we are infidels. As such, we are only worthy of death.

One of TFC's fellow pilots was a Marine battalion commanding officer during the first few years of the war. (He has since retired.) When he returned from Iraq, he told TFC that whenever they would capture one of the terrorists, he would tell them, "You Americans don't understand, if I don't kill you, my son will kill you. If my son doesn't kill you, my grandson will kill you."

The bad guys understand the generational nature of this conflict. We need to as well. Our lives and the lives of our children and grandchildren depend on this understanding.

In the video above, it's plain to see Ms. Burnett lacks this understanding. Also, like so many of her colleagues in the mainstream media, she smugly believes she is the smartest person in the room. It is this attitude which helps to explain the animus of the left towards George W. Bush. They truly believe he is an imbecile, (in spite of his Harvard MBA), and they are incapable of understanding those of us in "flyover country" who continue to support him.

Does TFC agree with everything George Bush has done during his Presidency? Of course not.

Immigration. The Prescription Drug entitlement. The failure to veto numerous spending bills. (It chagrins TFC greatly to admit this - under Bush, the federal budget has increased even more than under Bill Clinton.) The fact that two border patrol agents continue to languish in federal prison. In all of these, the Bush adminstration has been a tremendous disappointment.

These domestic issues notwithstanding, in regards to the most important issue of our day - the fight against global terrorism - President Bush has performed admirably. It really is just this simple - the War on Terror trumps every other issue. If we are all dead, nothing else matters.

In regards to the conduct of the War in Iraq, certainly mistakes have been made. One of the earliest mistakes was disbanding the Iraqi army after the fall of Baghdad. The 100,000 trained, fighting-age men who were sent home, along with former Baathists and Fedayeen Sadaam members, formed the backbone of the early insurgency.

As for the canard that Sadaam did not possess Weapons of Mass Destruction, as a former military intelligence officer and Middle East analyst, TFC is here to tell you he did have WMDs.

Don't believe it? Just ask the Kurds or the Iranians.

Where did they all go?

There is credible evidence to suggest that during the lead-up to the war, the Iraqis moved them to Syria.

Whether Sadaam did or did not have WMDs, in the decade after Gulf War I politicians on both sides of the Atlantic, as well as both sides of "the aisle," believed he did. He certainly acted like he had these weapons. If he didn't, all Sadaam had to do was let the inspectors in, and he would still be living in luxury, instead of taking the "eternal, celestial dirt nap," in his tribal cemetery in Tikrit.

Even the most ardent Bush opponents are now forced to admit, the "Surge" is working.

There is something strangely familar, (and somewhat amusing) about all this. Like those who opposed Ronald Reagan, and then sought to take credit for the end of the Cold War, the spin by some on the left evokes a certain sense of deja vu'.

As for Ms. Burnett's characterization of the President, there is some historical precedent for this sort of thing.

When Abraham Lincoln took office, there were many people that, putting it mildly, did not think him worthy of the task. Among his chief tormentors was a man who, upon meeting Lincoln for the first time, referred to him as a "long-armed ape."

Edwin M. Stanton, who would become Lincoln's mercurial Secretary of War, did not hide his initial disdain for the future president. He took great pleasure in belittling the gangly, unsophisticated country lawyer.

Lincoln, for his part, overlooked these many vicious slights and, in 1862 appointed Stanton to head his War Department. Over the next 3 years, Stanton grew to love and admire Lincoln greatly. The night that Lincoln was shot, Stanton maintained a vigil alongside his deathbed. When the President finally expired, Stanton uttered the famous phrase, "Now he belongs to the ages."

History will judge George W. Bush and his Presidency.

Like Lincoln's critics before, when the books are finally written, TFC suspects "W's" critics will be shown to have been a bunch of "monkey's uncles."


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