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FROM THE EDITOR
Suspension of Belief
JR Dieckmann

How many times have we heard that "we shouldn't be in Iraq but rather our efforts should be concentrated in Afghanistan on the people who attacked us on 911?" The war in Iraq is not about the people who attacked us on 9-11 anymore than the greater War on Terror is. This war is a war against a primitive and barbaric ideology whose followers want to take control of Iraq, and if successful there, will then be encouraged to strive for control of the entire free world piece by piece. Saddam didn't have to be involved in 9-11 to for us to justify his removal. It was his own doing by the choices he made over the previous 12 years.

The Islamic takeover is already happening in Europe because Europeans have refused to stand up for their culture and their countries which are being overrun by Islam. Now they're beginning to realize their mistake in some European countries but it may be too late for them to fix the problem now. Their liberal laws protect the invaders just as political correctness is protecting the invaders of America.

This war in Iraq is a war against Islamofascist aggression on the west. It is a culture war that we must fight not only because nobody else will, but also because America is the heart and strength of freedom in the western world. It is the ideology of Islamofascism that we are fighting in Iraq. The same ideology that felled the twin towers in New York.

No one in the Bush administration ever made the claim that Iraq was involved in the 9-11 attacks. But even now, 4 1/2 years after the invasion and 5 years after the case against Saddam Hussein was made, Democrats still use that false premise for saying "Bush lied, Iraq was not involved in the attacks on 9-11." No one ever suggested that it was except for the Democrat shills.

We didn't start this war in Iraq anymore than we started the war on terror. Saddam started this war when he invaded Kuwait 17 years ago, then failed to abide by the ceasefire agreement and ignored 17 U.N. resolutions to disarm. After 9-11 we could no longer gamble with the security of our nation and ignore an Islamic dictator with weapons of mass destruction, who was giving aid and support to terrorists, and had declared us his enemy. Saddam was warned 17 times to abide by the ceasefire agreement and each time he refused. The ceasefire finally had to be cancelled and Saddam and his sons had to be removed from the gene pool. There was simply no other choice.

Over the past 25 years, Americans have been attacked by Islamofascists a dozen times culminating in the attacks on 9-11. How can Democrats pretend that we don't have the right to defend ourselves and our country? How can they condemn our president for removing a threat which would have most likely been involved in the next terrorist attack on America? The president did what he had to do to fulfill his primary obligation to the office, that of protecting America.

In January, 2007, General Petraeus and his plan for the Surge was unanimously approved by the Senate. He was required to report on his progress to Congress in September. This week he delivered that report as requested but Democrats weren't interested in anything he had to say. When the question and answer period began after his report, Democrats had no real questions, only statements and speeches disputing the very report they themselves requested even before the report was delivered. Their minds were already made up so why even waste time with the report?

In my "Last Word" column last week I stated the following:

"Early reports show positive results of the Surge, and Gen. Petraeus will be reporting on those results to Congress this week. It is not the report Democrats were hoping for, so to save face, over the past week they have been trying to discredit the report by changing the subject. They now say military progress doesn't really matter. It’s all about political progress.

Prior to the Surge, all they could talk about was the lack of military progress with little mention of political progress. During the Surge they kept insisting the operation was a failure. They are now about to be proven wrong and they know it. But they have their minds already made up and no matter what Petraeus reports, the war is still a failure in their book, and if they can‘t portray the Surge as a failure, then it‘s the Iraqi government that is a failure. And of course, it’s all George W. Bush’s fault."

And that is just what we saw during the Petraeus hearings this week with one exception; one disgraceful tactic that I never thought the Democrats would sink so low as to use. With all of their flagrant disrespect for the Commanding General at the center of the war on terror, they called him a liar and did their best to impugn his character and integrity with the whole world watching. This may be the best thing that could have happened because it showed the country and the world just who these Democrats are and what they stand for. It was clear to anyone with eye and ears what was going on.

In a joint venture between the Democrat Party, MoveOn.org, and the New York times, the Times, on Monday morning before the hearings, posted a full page ad calling General Petraeus a traitor and referring to him as "Gen. Betray Us." The ad went on to accuse the general of being a shill for Bush and "cooking the books" to present a false report on Iraq. It was obvious proof that Democrats already had their minds made up and weren't going to listen to anything the general had to say. Note that not one Democrat presidential candidate has denounced the ad. You don't bite the hand that feeds you.

Even before the hearings began, Nancy Pelosi said on camera: "The stay-the-course strategy by Gen. Petraeus and the president to leave all troops in Iraq has been rejected by the American people." "Stay the course" is just one of a number of lies the Dems have been telling to the American people. The Surge was a change in course but Democrats refuse to accept it.

Pelosi and other Democrats have been calling the Petraeus report the "Bush report" and reject the General's opening statement where he stated that the report he was about to deliver was written by him alone and was never submitted to, or modified by the White House or the Pentagon. "At the outset I would like to note that this is my testimony. Although I have briefed my assessment and recommendations to my chain of command, I wrote this testimony myself. It has not been cleared by nor shared with anyone in the Pentagon, the White House or the Congress until it was just handed out." But according to Pelosi and her ilk, this is the "Bush Report?"

The Petraeus plan has not been rejected by the American people and Democrat leaders do not speak for us. They are speaking only for the radical, antiwar left which has the Dem leaders in their pockets.

Harry Reid accused the White House of having "cherry picked" the data in the report to prop up their position on the war. "I have every belief that this good man, General Petraeus, will give us what he feels is the right thing to do in the report that is now not his report. It's President Bush's report," said Reid. Was Reid calling Gen. Petraeus a liar, or was it just that his statement was made before the general stated that the report was his own?

The Politico reports on one Democratic senator, who spoke on the condition on anonymity: "No one wants to call [Petraeus] a liar on national TV. The expectation is that the outside groups will do this for us." And that they did, but it didn't end there.

House Minority Leader John Boehner struck back with: "Defaming and impugning the integrity of a commanding, four-star general as he returns from the front lines of war is reprehensible, and Democratic leaders should put a stop to it at once. These comments do a disservice to the tens of thousands of American military families whose loved ones are under his command and serve no constructive purpose whatsoever in moving our troops closer to victory in Iraq."

On the morning of the hearings, General Petraeus' microphone was disabled for 10 minutes while the "pinkos" from Code Pink protested in the back of the hearing chambers until they were thrown out under threat of arrest by committee chairman Ike Skelton. Gen. Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker must have known at that point that they were in enemy territory and were no doubt anxious to get back to Iraq. Nonetheless, they each skillfully and deliberately delivered their reports.

When it was Rep. Tom Lantos' (D-Ca) turn to rant, he went on for more than 5 minutes on a screed against the credibility of Petraeus and the report concluding with "We cannot take any of this administration’s assertions about Iraq at face value anymore. The fact remains, gentlemen, that the administration has sent you here today to convince the members of these two committees and the Congress that victory is at hand. With all due respect to you, I must say: I don’t buy it." Lantos was calling Petraeus a liar on national TV. Apparently he wasn't willing to let the antiwar left groups have all the glory. He is wrong in saying that the administration had sent them there, when in fact it was Congress who had demanded the report.  And to top it off, Gen. Petraeus didn't say anything about victory being close at hand.  Lantos' comments were written long before he ever saw the report.

Not to be outdone by Lantos, Hillary Clinton in essence called Gen. Petraeus a liar when she remarked: "I think the reports that you provide to us really require the willing suspension of disbelief." I wonder who wrote that line for her. It sounds like it came straight from James Carville, the former Clinton advisor. Earlier, Clinton had said: "I was against the Surge when it was first proposed." Really? She voted for it. It's funny how what Clinton says publicly, and what she does in the Senate are usually two different things.

Joe Biden had this gem to offer: "President Bush’s war strategy is failing and the top military commander in Iraq is ‘dead flat wrong’ for warning against major changes... The fact of the matter is that American lives remain in jeopardy and... if every single jihadi in the world was killed tomorrow, we’d still have a major, major war on our hands [in Iraq]." "Major changes" of course, makes the false assumption that the Surge was not a major change in strategy. If all the jihadi were killed, then who would we be fighting? Biden later stated: "There is a big disconnect between the truth of the matter and the reality. I mean, the truth of the matter is that... the administration’s policy and the surge are a failure." Is this Biden's assessment based on his vast knowledge of the reality on the ground in Iraq, which must be far superior to that of General Petraeus? No, it's just the Democrat talking points repeated over and over again until people begin to believe it, just as Karl Marx instructed in his teachings on Marxism.

"We should not be fooled into this tactical success debate... There is no military solution," said John Kerry. A somewhat mild statement in itself, but does say two things. One, if we can't win the debate on tactical success, we should avoid it altogether. And two, that Kerry has no clue how to win this war. It's back to "there has to be a political solution which has failed."

Harry Reid had this to offer: "Clearly, continuing to pursue the President’s flawed escalation policy until at least July 2008 is not in the national interest of the United States." I would like to know what Reid considers would be in the national interest of the United States. Does he really believe that defeat, surrender, and an Islamofascist Iraq would be in our best interests?

And that is just a sample of the abuse Gen. Petraeus was subjected to during these hearings. In spite of it all, the general remained calm and in control. With each false accusation by the Democrats, the general laid out the truth for all to hear in a professional way. The Democrat lies all fell by the wayside as Petraeus shined the light of reality upon them in the report that Congress requested but didn't want to hear.

Just as Democrats have been putting words in Bush's mouth that he didn't say, they are doing the same thing now with Gen. Petraeus, saying the rosy picture he presented to Congress is simply not true. But the truth is, the good general didn't present a rosy picture. He reported on the progress, and the deficiencies currently existing on the ground in Iraq, exactly as requested by Congress.

Had he left out the parts on success, the Dems would have embraced him with open arms. But that is not what he was there for. He was there as the expert, to inform the Congress of the progress being made in Iraq. Apparently, the liberals in Congress feel that MoveOn.org and the Daily KOS are better informed on the progress in Iraq than General Petraeus is.

Not only did Congressional Democrats not want to hear it, but more importantly, they didn't want the American people to hear it as it conflicted with the picture of failure they have been trying to promote. Now they claim the rosy picture Petraeus presented was a lie as though they didn't hear a word he said. They probably didn't. They already had their speeches in font of them just waiting for their turn in front of the camera to dispute things Petraeus didn't say while ignoring things he did say. Obviously, Democrats didn't expect to see any military progress when they scheduled this report several months ago.

The agenda of today's Democrat leaders is clear. Lie, cheat, and take illegal campaign contributions, but most of all, smear their opponents and spread falsehoods to the public through their media shills, while offering nothing but socialism at the cost of the taxpayers and American values. On Iraq, the words "success" and "victory" have never been in their vocabulary. The only thing they have promoted is failure and surrender. Not once were these words used by Democrats during the hearings. Not once did any one of them ask how they could help to bring about success in Iraq.

Our Islamic enemies need not create their own propaganda; the Democrats are doing it for them. We see the Democrat rhetoric in every tape released by al Qaeda, and daily at al Jazeera. When will Americans wake up to the realization that these people are not promoting American values but rather the values of a weak 3rd world communist country incapable of defending itself? The security of America can never be trusted to this group who agree more with Osama bin Laden than they do with our founding fathers.