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Good afternoon all! Welcome back to PUNDIT ROUNDTABLE, our weekly gathering of bright lights, here to inform you and entertain you. I am your host, Ken McCracken. Here are our topics for this week:
Topic 1: Yesterday was the third anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. Is the U.S. on the right trajectory for success in Iraq, or not? Are we witnessing a civil war unfolding in Iraq? Should the troops come home yet?
Topic 2: Give us the name of one movie our readers should watch.
I'd like to welcome back returning guest Jim Hoft, the Gateway Pundit. Let's hear what you have to say Jim . . .
Man, I love link-intensive responses, and Jim as usual certainly did his homework. His response is also posted as Three Years of Dragging Democrats Through Their Iraqi Quagmire at his blog.
Our next guest is returning pundit Eric Lindholm, alias the VikingPundit, with his take. Welcome back Eric, what do you think?
Next we have second-time guest Mark Coffey of Decision '08 (Because It's Never Too Early!). Mark, whaddya say?
Next up is our own classy Will Franklin, owner of this blog. Will?
The Host's Last Word: We have been told so many times that Iraq is 'deteriorating' that by now the entire country should have dissolved and drained away into the Persian Gulf. Naturally, the press fails to acknowledge that every single setback that was supposed to end our mission in Iraq never materialized or has been overcome: the very worst scandals, such as at Abu Ghraib, did not cause the Arab street to erupt as predicted by the MSM. If this jailhouse frat party is the worst the U.S. has to offer, we look damned civilized compared to Saddam Hussein, and the Iraqi people know this. The Allies have also had success after success in Iraq: shrinking the operating range of the terrorists, closing border infiltrations from Syria, establishment of a competent civilian government, peaceful transfer of power to a newly-elected government, adoption of a Constitution, rebuilding of infrastructure and new construction of schools, hospitals and roads, quelling of a nascent civil war, and now with Operation Swarmer we see effective operations by Iraqi military units themselves, taking the lead. It is a comprehensive policy that has worked.
By contrast, what successes can the terrorists point to in Iraq? None - their only successes have been propaganda coups within the U.S. All they have to do is mouth opposition to the U.S., and that is enough for the leftist press in this country to take up their cause and champion it as their own. The only truly effective weapon that might bring victory to the terrorists is the Tokyo Rose Press here in our own country.
The press seems bound and determined to make sure that Iraq is replayed as Vietnam - where 'journalists' arrogated to themselves the power to bring us an avoidable and undeserved humiliation and defeat.
Speaking of World War II and Vietnam, I want to mention again The Fog Of War, a wonderful interview/documentary of Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara, a man who was at the center of it all, who explains in his own words the vagaries of war planning.
In three very short years, Iraq has gone from a genocidal thugocracy, to a vibrant democracy full of optimism. How very grateful we are as a nation to those Iraqis, Americans and Allies who made the ultimate sacrifice for this noble and truly revolutionary venture. We also express gratitude to everyone still making the difficult sacrifices of continued service in Iraq and Afghanistan. We salute you.
Posted by Ken McCracken · 19 March 2006 11:34 AM
As long as my response is in agreement with Will's, I know I am on the right track.
And, It's great to see Viking Pundit back up and running.
Posted by: Jim Hoft at March 19, 2006 12:10 PM
Having recently finished His Excellency, I'm looking at Iraq with freshened eyes, and it certainly looks to me as if a nation that can carry off three wildly successful elections and form a coalition government, less than three years after a decades-long dictatorship was taken down by an outside power, is on the right track indeed. Look at how long it took the American colonies to become the United States of America as we now know them... Even in our accelerated world, the pace of profound political and social change has an upper bound; I'd say we're up against it in Iraq, and the Iraqis continue to surprise us with their resilience and determination to use this opportunity we've given them.
I don't want to be a foolish optimist, but like Mr. Coffey, I see the Iraqi reaction to the mosque bombing as one of the most encouraging signs yet that Iraqis are realizing that when nationalism trumps tribalism or religious fealty to political aims, a successful society is much more likely to result.
Posted by: Jamie at March 19, 2006 07:54 PM
Great work, Jim.
Posted by: Will Franklin at March 19, 2006 08:54 PM
What's with all the genocidal thug-bashing?
You're all just a bunch of genocidal thugophobes. Shame!
Posted by: GenocidalThug at March 20, 2006 09:35 AM
I have a friend who is in the Air National Guard and she was complaining to me about the newer more strict health regulations they were passing. I believe that they HAD TO HAVE something like a 29 or 30 inch waist, or they would be put into essentially the ANG's weight-loss program.
And that was over a year ago. So much for lower standards.
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