Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Clueless Jan - "The Iraq War is lost! Our presence in Iraq is making things worse! We must withdraw from Iraq immediately!"

Such has been the liberal tautology almost from the beginning of our sojourn in Mesopotamia. No one has been more of a standard-bearer for the pacifist Left than Chicago's own Jan Schakowsky (D-IL). On the basis of her first visit to Iraq, Congresswoman Schakowsky continues to pronounce defeat in Iraq and in the War on Terror more generally.

But recent events have had a way of making Ms. Schakowsky a bit more isolated in her position. The tidal wave of good news from Iraq began with the defections of former Iraqi al Qaeda collaborators, and picked up speed with the New York Times' publication of an op-ed from a pair of Brookings Institution stalwarts, Michael O'Hanlon and Kenneth Pollack, suggesting that "[w]e are finally getting somewhere in Iraq." Most Americans seem to agree, given the results of the latest UPI/Zogby poll, which indicates that a majority of Americans believe that the U.S. has not lost the War in Iraq.

Beyond the foregoing, more and more of her Democrat colleagues are seeing the necessity of staying our current course. In particular, Rep. Brian Baird (D-WA) has reversed his initial position on the war and has now come out in support of the military surge (much to the chagrin of MoveOn.org.) For his part, even Sen. Harry Reid has expressed some willingness to compromise on timelines for withdrawal in order to work with (antiwar) Republicans.

And then there's Jan, still waving the white flag. I happened to catch a roundtable on The NewsHour that included Reps. Schakowsky and Baird, along with Chris Shays (R-CN) and Charles Boustany (R-LA). (RealAudio available here.) In the face of fact-based commentary from both of the Republican House members, as well as from her Democrat collegue, Schakowsky was reduced to recapitulating all of the classic liberal talking points - virtually in the fashion represented above. Interestingly enough, it was Baird who made the most salient point in refuting Schakowsky, asking in effect, what will be left of the Iraqi people if the U.S. makes an immediate withdrawal from the country.

And of course that is entirely the point. However we got into Iraq, we are there presently, and we have a responsibility to both Iraqis and Americans to finish the job with honor. That this seems foreign to Ms. Shakowsky does not speak well of the Illinois Congressional Delegation.

To paraphrase a bumper sticker that was popular during the Clinton administration, "Is it 2008 yet?"

No comments: