The Washington Post ran yet another anti-war editorial from former Iraq servicemembers. Bob Herbert notices something rather telling about the 12 signatories to the article:
I value the writers’ service and their opinions as soldiers who have served in Iraq, but wouldn’t this editorial have meant more if the Washington Post had managed to find soldiers to write it who had actually been in in Iraq in the last year?
Only two of the 12 captains had been in Iraq as late as 2006, with the rest all departing in 2005 or before. None of them are currently on active duty.
While their opinions are valuable from a historical perspective based upon what they’ve seen while they served, they hardly seem to be best qualified to be able to comment upon the current situation on the ground in Iraq, as it has changed so radically since the last of them departed.
The media is desperate to preserve the narrative on Iraq. Despite the concerted effort of the media, left-wing groups like MoveOn.org, and the Democratic Party to “end the war” the battle for Iraq has not been abandoned. Despite the attempts to argue that the situation in Iraq is not improving, even the Post is admitting that the numbers are improving. Despite the attempts to paint a picture of a losing war it appears that al-Qaeda is the one fighting a losing battle in Iraq.
With all due respect to the 12 American soldiers who sacrificed their time for this war, their information is out of date and contradicted by the current situation on the ground. For example, they argue that the “surge” is causing alienation between US troops and the Iraqis. If that is true, then why has the Anbar Awakening been such a success? Iraqi leaders like Sheikh Abu Sattar al-Risha have worked closely with American troops to rid al-Anbar of AQI terrorists. If there are “swayed allegiances” in Iraq those allegiances are swaying against al-Qaeda and towards a free Iraq.
The media narrative has always been one of defeat in Iraq. The truth is far more complex. It’s far too soon to declare victory in Iraq, but the signs of progress are unmistakable. The first step towards fixing Iraq has always been to restore security and allow for the Iraqis to develop their own political institutions from the ground up. We are making demonstrable progress on that front, and even the Post has been forced to admit that numbers paint a far different picture than their chosen narrative.