is stuck on negatives of war in Iraq
By Alan Nathan
August 11, 2005
Left's hunger for genuinely progressive principles is rivaled
only by Paris Hilton's craving for privacy — both are
appetites less than ravenous. They reveal this by demonstrating
a double-standard tolerance for the intolerance of Islamic
extremists and their apologist governments in the Middle East.
congressional record shows that in the aggregate, Democrats
have voiced greater outrage over American abuse of prisoners
than they have over Muslim support for atrocities. This became
manifestly salient when Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin likened
American soldiers at Guantanamo Bay to those who had served
under Hitler, Pol Pot and Joseph Stalin.
use their free-speech rights to support the very timetable
withdrawal that would further enable dictatorial forces in
the region to continue depriving their own citizenry of those
same rights to free speech. These are regimes that, if given
their druthers, would divest from the Left their own current
entitlements of expression so as to pre-empt eventual dissent.
It seems so counterintuitive.
Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts and Barbara Boxer of California
are also emblematic of this syndrome. Mr. Kennedy harps monthly
about Iraq as a "quagmire" or "the new Vietnam,"
and Mrs. Boxer recently mimicked the European Left's sentiment
to the Commonwealth Club of California arguing that, "Terrorism
is a result of this war." Where is the causation given
that Osama bin Laden killed 3,000 on our soil a year-and-a-half
before the war began?
abroad or here, supposed progressives seem not to realize
that the tenants of liberalism are unable to thrive unless
they exist within the environs of a country possessing a representative
government whose leaders rule by the consent of the governed
— such as the one we're helping to create in Iraq.
mainstream media has also shown complicity in this endeavor.
Its reporting of the war in Iraq has focused on setbacks at
the exclusion of equally verifiable triumphs. Our successful
kills of the enemy consistently receive less news prominence.
The Sunni political leadership now participating in the drafting
of their country's new constitution garners little attention,
though its earlier absence was once at the heart of liberal
and press ridicule. Additionally, infrastructural advances
have minimal reporting, though the examples are many. One
of the most dramatic was a mission involving a 700-ton, 260-megawatt
combustion turbine generator secretly hauled over 640 miles
through the insurgency dominated Anbar province.
Thanks to coalition forces, the citizens of Kirkuk will soon
have power for their families. But you'll not hear Mr. Durbin
speak of miracles like this. He's more outraged by terrorist
prisoners not receiving their rightful servings of chateaubriand
chased down by magnums of Cristal.
practice narrows the journalistic picture of Iraq instead
of expanding it, and consequently marginalizes our nation's
collective grasp of the advancements in that burgeoning democracy.
who recognize this tendency for not reporting progress alongside
setbacks in Iraq will rationalize it by arguing that good
news is rarely covered. Paul Begala, former CNN host and White
House counsel for Bill Clinton, once said on my show "Alan,
please, you never cover planes that land on time and safely."
It's a reasoning that's beyond bizarre. What drives the legitimacy
of a news story isn't whether it's good or bad. What drives
it is whether or not it's eventful. We report good news all
the time i.e., stock markets rising, housing starts increasing,
unemployment dropping and teenage pregnancy declining. The
reason we're not covering planes that land on time and safely
isn't because it's good news — it's simply not eventful.
vexing truth about the Left is their insistence to block some
of the more effective methods of stopping these Muslim terrorists
whose perfect universe is one in which all the Left's professed
ideals (like equality for women and the right to choose or
reject a religious path) would be quashed immediately. One
strategy they repudiate on every level is that of racial profiling
even if it's only applied to monitoring.
as it made sense to look at Southern white males when tracking
suspected members of the KKK in the '60's and '70s, doesn't
it make equal sense to look at Middle Easterners when tracking
members of al Qaeda? While the vast majority of Southern white
males didn't belong to the KKK, most cross-burners in the
KKK were Southern white males. Conversely, while the vast
majority of Middle Easterners don't belong to al Qaeda, almost
all terrorists in al Qaeda are of Middle Eastern descent.
these numeric realities dictate that demographic origins have
at least some relevance to our system of profiling?