Uncle Jimbo has picked up on the fact that many opponents of the Iraq war are willing to portray even a win in Iraq as a defeat if it suits their political purposes. They are trying to get out in front of the narrative by calling for a drawdown in the troop levels knowing that one was planned for next year anyhow. This way they can portray a drawdown as Iraqi troops pick up the struggle as a defeat for our forces.
The news media did this in Vietnam by portraying the huge military victory during the Tet Offensive of 1968 as an American defeat. They want to repeat their success.
To many of the “opponents of the war” the most important thing is not that the Iraqi’s can be free, the most important thing for them is that Iraq be portrayed as a defeat for President Bush.
We have entered the end game in Iraq and now the most important battle is no longer whether democracy and freedom prevail there, but how will we and the world view this conflict, and more importantly US power overall.
The opposition and their media have made no bones that they consider it a stinging defeat in a conflict predicated on lies, and that all the casualties were in vain. Aside from it’s outrageous detachment from reality, it is a narrative we cannot allow to stand.
There is a hopeful note however. Unlike Vietnam the soldiers that served in Iraq know what they did and know how much the Iraqis appreciated it. Thousands of those troops have returned home each with their unique stories and photos. They know the truth and will not be silent when the newspapers twist their stories into tales of defeat. Witness what happened when the New York Times truncated a soldiers letter to give the impression that the soldier was resigned to death rather than supportive of the mission.