Friday, February 24, 2006

Have the Patience to Win

I've repeatedly written that I think it is self evident that we are winning the war in Iraq. Even as we win, support has dropped and the opposition has been getting bolder in calling for our retreat. This is mind boggling to me.

Victor Hanson (via Real Clear Politics), just back from Iraq, calls for patience:

Screaming Iraqis and mangled body parts still dominate Americans' nightly two minutes of news from Iraq. And, indeed, Iraq is still a scary place within the Sunni Triangle.

Opposition politicians in the United States charge that our troops don't have enough body protection or heavily armored Humvees — suggesting that our fighters have been almost criminally ignored. On CNN, a journalist laments that a prominent news colleague severely wounded near Taji is emblematic of the mess of the entire American effort.

But Iraq, like all wars, is not static. What was supposedly true on the ground in Iraq in 2003 is not necessarily so in 2006 — in the way that the situation in Europe in 1943 hardly resembled that of May 1945.

Yet while things have changed radically in Iraq, the pessimistic tone of our reporting remains calcified. Little is written about the new Iraqi government, the emergence of the Iraqi security forces or the radically changing role of the American military.

I recently listened to members of the newly elected Iraqi provincial council in strife-torn Kirkuk. All were enthusiastic about their new responsibilities. They were unabashedly argumentative with one another over security, electricity and oil production — but still confident that they could govern their own affairs. As the meeting broke up, a female council member whispered, "Tell the Americans thanks, but ask them to have patience with us."

Seriously people, have the patience to collect the victory we and our Iraqi friends are winning on the ground every day. A crisis like the shrine attack is one to weather--not one to prompt panic and retreat to the forces of chaos and evil that we are defeating every day.

When we win, I am seriously going to enjoy the mental gynastics of the unserious critics and academics (or am I being redundant?) as they explain just how we won after committing error after error in the so-called most ineptly waged war in history.