As General David Petraeus returns to the US Senate to report on the war in Iraq, it is worth reminiscing on what occurred last time he appeared.
Yes, we had our front page ad “General Betray Us?” in that appeared in the New York Times with a sweetheart rate that violated the papers’ own standard of ethics.
But we also had that bastion of personal integrity – the junior Senator from New York – question the honesty and credibility of the general.
I cite a 12 Sep 2007 New York Sun story that appeared under the headline, “Clinton Spars With Petraeus on Credibility.” The first two paragraphs of that story by staff reporter Eli Lake read as follows:
“WASHINGTON — Senator Clinton squared off yesterday with her possible challenger for the White House in 2012, General David Petraeus, and came closer than any of her colleagues to calling the commander of the multinational forces in Iraq a liar.
Using blunter language than any other Democrat in the last two days, Mrs. Clinton told General Petraeus that his progress report on Iraq required “a willing suspension of disbelief.””
Well, let’s reflect on that a bit. Hindsight being what it is and all.
We now know that Senator Clinton is a documented liar on numerous fronts (her story of coming under sniper fire in Bosnia has been refuted by video of the event; her story of playing a role in the Ireland peace talks has been refuted by a Nobel Prize winning participant in addition to other participants; her story of a “vast right-wing conspiracy” was refuted by that stain on the blue dress, etc. etc.).
I saw a biography of General David Petraeus on Fox News after he was named to command the multinational forces in Iraq, and was frankly awed by the man’s history of character and integrity. His entire life is a study in character and honor. He took control over a situation that had been presented as hopeless and turned it around in a manner that can only be described as stunning. By the time he appeared before the Senate last year, he had come through for this nation in a way that merited the gratitude of every American, and in particular every parent who sent a son or daughter to Iraq under his command. And as a reward this true American hero was attacked by demagogues who will never even begin to understand the character and integrity that David Petraeus has demonstrated throughout his life.
Mind you, Senator Clinton has hardly cornered the market on vicious attacks against American heroes:
Jay Rockefeller, the Senator from West Virginia, launched an incredibly hateful statement against Senator John McCain in an interview with the Charleston Gazette. He said McCain has become insensitive to many human issues. According to the paper, Rockefeller said “McCain was a fighter pilot, who dropped laser-guided missiles from 35,000 feet. He was long gone when they hit. What happened when they get to the ground? He doesn’t know. You have to care about the lives of people. McCain never gets into those issues.”
Rockefeller later apologized for his comment, but you can’t just take back a statement like that, can you? It was inexcusable, and frankly unforgivable. Rockefeller not only attacked JohnMcCain; he attacked every American serviceman who ever fired a weapon against an enemy during time of war.
This Senator Jay Rockefeller, by the way, is the same Jay Rockefeller who has positioned himself as a major Barack Obama supporter, and who recently urged that – for the good of the country – Senator Clinton should drop out of the Democratic primary and support Barack Obama. You can thus add him to the list of associates of Barack Obama who have said and/or done terrible things against America (e.g. Obama’s pastor for twenty years’ [Jeremiah Wright] racist charge that America created the AIDS virus to kill black people; his wife Michelle Obama’s statement that “America in 2008 is a mean place” which itself followed a similar statement that she had never been proud of America in her adult life; Barack Obama’s friend (as acknowledged by Obama’s own strategist David Axelrod) and former Weatherman Terrorist Professor William Ayers – who openly acknowledged bombing attacks after 9/11 – and claimed to have no regrets over them).
[As to William Ayers, it is frankly amazing that this man - who has openly acknowledged bombing the New York Police Headquarters as well as the Capital building and other locations and said on 9/11 that his only regret is that he didn't bomb enough - is now an honored member of the liberal education establishment and a significant member of his community in Chicago, Illinois. You begin to see more clearly the absolutely toxic political environment that Barack Obama has emerged from].
Now, that last paragraph will be immediately dismissed by those who argue that you can’thold one’s associations against someone. So it doesn’t matter that Barack Obama sat in a pew for twenty years under the teachings of a documented America-hating racist. But it certainly goes to his judgment and his integrity. Michelle Obama has clearly been influenced by her pastor’s teachings, and Barack Obama has whitewashed several of Reverend Wright’s sermons and teachings – by removing the anti-white rantings but holding on to the substance – for mass consumption. Wright railed against “white greed” in his “Audacity of Hope” message. Obama rephrases it to say, “The greatest problem in America is greed.” Obama leaves it up to you to recognize that he’s talking about “white” greed.
And also mind you, Senator Clinton has hardly cornered the market on telling self-serving lies or padding her resume.
A Snopes.com article details some of Barack’s lies and provides their refutations. While Hillary Clinton’s lie can be seen exposed in vivid, hillarious color, Barack Obama is an even bigger documented liar than she when it comes to rewriting history to fabricate his own story. Barack Obama massively fabricated his association with President Kennedy: his father did NOT come to the United States with Kennedy money. And his mother were NOT inspired to marry and have a child by the Selma march as Barack Obama claimed: the first of the marches did not occur until at least five years after Barack was born!
Furthermore, Obama has lied about numerous aspects of his past in an attempt to bolster his credentials. He claimed on numerous occasions that he was a constitutional law professor at the University of Chicago: he was no such thing. He was a lecturer only. There is as gigantic a distinction between “professor” and “lecturer” as there is between “sniper fire”and “there had been reports of possible sniper fire in the area.”
Obama has also boasted of having passed legislation that in reality never even left committee. And fellow organizers have said that Sen. Obama took too much credit for his community organizing efforts.
An 8 April 2008 Time Magazine article by Mark Halperin details the above “misstatements” and many others. Basically, it chops Obama’s credibility down like a tree.
Another clear Obama lie has been his profound mischaricterization of John McCain as saying that McCain “wants the war to last for a hundred years.” Asked whether he would support U.S. troops staying in Iraq for fifty years, McCain said, ““Make it a hundred. We’ve been in Japan for 60 years. We’ve been in South Korea for 50 years or so. That would be fine with me, as long as American, as long as Americans are not being injured or harmed or wounded or killed.” The non-partisan Factcheck.org says Obama’s claim that McCain wants 100 years of war in Iraq is a “twisted” and “serious distortion of what McCain actually said. So much for the candidate of hope and change, and so much for claiming to run and honest campaign.
Barack Obama’s biggest lie of all may well be the central promise of his entire campaign that – as the candidate of undefined “hope” and “change” – he can bridge the gap between liberals and conservatives. In reality, Barack Obama – winner of the prestigious “Most Liberal Senator of 2007 Award” handed out by the National Journal as determine by voting record – has established himself as a radically left of center politician. He is currently having to distance himself from his own views. An Illinois voter group’s detailed questionnaire, filed under his name during his 1996 bid for a state Senate seat, presents extremely liberal stands on gun control, the death penalty and abortion – positions that appear completely at odds with the more moderate image he’s projected during his presidential campaign. Yet another lie, I believe. In running for president, Barack Obamama must literally run away from himself.
Thus the Democratic primary becomes a question of “Which liar told bigger lies?” And, “Which group cares more about which lie?”
Meanwhile, General David Petraeus’ character, honesty, and integrity stands out like the giant Gulliver must have stood out among the Lilliputians.
But let’s not be too harsh on Senator Hillary Clinton or Senator Barack Obama. They are Democrats, after all. What do you really expect? They come from the Party of Bill Clinton, who sought to become our Commander in Chief in spite of his letter directly expressing his “loathing the military” (a direct quote completely accurate in context).
The Democratic Party is the party of Senator John Kerry, who said of American soldiers:
“I would like to talk, representing all those veterans, and say that several months ago in Detroit, we had an investigation at which over 150 honorably discharged and many very highly decorated veterans testified to war crimes committed in Southeast Asia, not isolated incidents but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command….
They told the stories at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal andvery particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.”
The Democratic Party is the party of Senator Dick Durbin, who – on the floor of the U.S. Senate – compared American soldiers to Nazis, and the Guantanamo Bay Detention facility with Soviet Gulags. Durbin’s comment resonated in perfect pitch with actress Jane Fonda’s calling U.S. soldiers war criminals during her visit to North Vietnam in 1972. And I give as my source an al Jazeera article to demonstrate just how harmful to the United States – and how helpful to our vicious enemies – statements such as Durbin’s really are.
The Democratic Party is the party of Representative Jack Murtha, who went on record as the first on-the-record U.S. official regarding the events that took place with U.S. Marines in Haditha. Before any investigation – and certainly before any trial – Murtha said, “Well, I’ll tell you exactly what happened. One Marine was killed and the Marines just said we’re going to take care – we don’t know who the enemy is, the pressure was too much on them, so they went into houses and they actually killed civilians.”
In another interview Murtha said, “There was no firefight. There was no IED that killed those innocent people. Our troops overreacted because of the pressure on them. And they killed innocent civilians in cold blood. That is what the report is going to tell. “
The aftermath should demonstrate just how despicable Murtha was in publicly convicting these young Marines without a trial. Charges have been repeatedly dropped. Others have been acquitted. One Marine – clearly believing the zealous prosecution line – agreed to testify against another Marine. Thus far, the Marines have been vindicated. The results of subsequent investigations have clearly exonerated the Marines. Again and again, the details provided by Marines confirmed their story; again and again, the details alleged by the Iraqi witnesses have been demonstrated to be false.
I have heard Murtha apologists claim that Murtha himself was a Marine and therefore his character should be beyond question. Well, so was Lee Harvey Oswald! Should we therefore not question his character?!?! As a further observation, I find a former Marine railroading fellow Marines to be even more contemptible than a non-Marine railroading Marines. It’s like finding out that the man who publicly and maliciously framed you was your own father; there’s just something profoundly wrong with the moral wiring of a man who does this kind of thing.
The Democratic Party is the Party of Representatives Jim McDermott of Washington and David Bonior of Michigan, who, back in 29 Sep 2002 appeared on This Week from the foreign (make that enemy) soil Baghdad and blasted U.S. foreign policy. Their clear point was that Americans should believe the documented torturer and murderer Saddam Hussein and distrust Republican President George Bush. During the course of this on-air fiasco, a clearly stunned George Will said of McCermott and Bonior’s vicious remarks, “”Why Saddam Hussein doesn’t pay commercial time for that advertisement for his policy, I do not know.”
Well, it turns out he did.
We now know that – in the opening words of a recent AP article – that “Saddam Hussein’s intelligence agency secretly financed a trip to Iraq for three U.S. lawmakers during the run-up to the U.S.-led invasion, federal prosecutors said Wednesday. An indictment unsealed in Detroit accuses Muthanna Al-Hanooti, a member of a Michigan nonprofit group, of arranging for three members of Congress to travel to Iraq in October 2002 at the behest of Saddam’s regime.” See the full article at http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080326/ap_on_re_us/iraq_junket
Even if these Democratic Congressmen didn’t know they were being used by Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi Intelligence, their actions were beneath all contempt. These elected American officials allowed themselves to be used as pawns by the intelligence agency of a ruthless tyrant.
The Democratic Party is the party of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who said “This war is lost, and this surge is not accomplishing anything” on 20 April 2007. Again, I offer as my source al Jazeera to show just how harmful such statements can be to us, and how they can and ARE being used to embolden our enemies.
Anyone who is capable of stepping back from political party partisanship for just a moment ought to have difficulty with a leader who so blithely claims defeat for his country in time of war. Winston Churchill famously said, “We will never give up! We will never surrender!” Henry Reid says, “This war is lost.” Thank God Churchill didn’t think that way, or we’d all be speaking German. As it is – if the terrorists and over a billion Muslims have their way – we might well all end up speaking Arabic.
And the Democratic Party is the party of House Majority Whip Representative James Clyburn, who acknowledged in an inverview on 30 July 2007 before General Petraeus’ first report that good news inIraq amounted to a problem for Democrats.
As General David Petraeus wraps up his visit to the snake pit of Washington, don’t forget who the Democrats are. They are the Party that is invested in American failure, the Party that roots for bad news in Iraq and Afghanistan for the sake of opportunistic political advantage.
Christopher Hitchens has a piece in Slate.com titled, “Flirting With Disaster: The vile spectacle of Democrats rooting for bad news in Iraq and Afghanistan.” It’s definitely worth reading.
I often wonder: had the Democrats continued to support the war that was authorized by a vote of 77-23 in the Senate (with 29 Democrats supporting [Senator Clinton among them] and only 21 opposed) and 296-133 in the House, and presented the world with a united front, how different could things have turned out? Would our enemies have remained emboldened in the face of steadfast American resolve? Would our allies have continued to refuse to help us had we presented a united face determined to prevail against the forces of international terrorism?
Imagine what would have happened in World War II had Republicans done everything they could have done to undermine, question, distort, and misrepresent Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt? Imagine what would have happened had Republicans en masse called for a withdrawal from the war against Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan? Had they characterized American fighting men as war criminals? Had they demanded that Generals Eisenhower and MacArthur come to Senate and defend themselves against charges that they were dishonest and incompetent? Do you think it would have helped or hurt the war effort? [This amounts to an IQ test, Democrats: and you have failed horribly].
For the Democrats to turn against the President in time of war and work to undermine American efforts to attain victory out of political opportunism is both craven and cowardly.
If good news in Iraq is bad news for Democrats, then Americans should hope for nothing less than really, really bad news for Democrats this November.