Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Biden Grudgingly Credits Bush on Success of Iraq Surge

The vice president is deeply pained to even minutely acknowledge the Bush administration's success on the Iraq surge strategy.

Of course, security has to precede political accommodation, so Biden's basically skipping over the military component of the Petraeus program. This is the same argument that hardline lefty bloggers made throughout 2007-08, since there was no way they could concede that President Bush not only did the right thing, but had the cojones to do so. Frankly, Biden should be praising the MILITARY component to high heaven, saying that this was 'a big fucking deal." What's even more interesting --- or troubling, if you will --- are these remarks on the continuing challenges:
"The fact of the matter is we're not there yet. We're making significant progress. The only time success will be able to be declared is when the Iraqis form a government and several years from now they are in a position to maintain their own security, they are not a threat to their neighbors, and their economy is growing and prospering. That's when everyone can say it's a success."
Well, if we're that far from being "successful," why in the hell are we pulling out? It's not as if there's a huge political liability here. National security is not the hottest of the hot-button issues this fall, and good money says the economy will still be tops in 2012. And by that time we'd have given the Iraqi forces two more years to consolidate the gains and for the political process to work out. And I'm not just making hay here. See Jennifer Rubin's post from this morning, "Deadlines." President Obama has committed a cardinal sin with respect to our military commitments: He's imposed a firm deadline on the end of military cooperation with the Iraqi government, which could literally blow up in his face --- not to mention the Iraqis' --- should the security situation go south. But I'm sure it'll all be fine. Obama picked Joe Biden as his V.P. running-mate to shore-up his credentials on foreign policy. While the jury's still out on Biden's foreign policy wisdom, he's no slouch on the political hedging end of things. Sheesh. You'd think we had a bunch of rookies in the Situation Room, or something.