For months, the list of professional Leftists who have betrayed this President and the Democratic Party has grown. Last night, we first had to listen to this outburst from Rachel Maddow
I think it is remarkable how the proponents of this war are getting off easy.
Then we had to endure this diary right here on our own DailyKos.
I'd like to be able to agree. Really, I would.
However, unlike President Obama, I could and did and do doubt Bush's support for the troops, love of country and commitment to our security. And I can wrest no mercy from the bitterness and rage that I feel every time I remember what he and the pack of thugs around him accomplished for the troops, the country and our security.
I cannot and will not turn the page until George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and the others in that cabal of scorpions are brought to justice and make amends for Iraq. Which means never. No apology, much less time in the slam. I'll go to my grave knowing Bush and the rest got away with it. In a couple of months, Bush hopes hundreds of thousands of Americans will be turning the pages of his memoir, a book certain to add to the plethora of lies and pathetic, murderous rationalizations with which we became so familiar during the last seven years of his presidency.
What is the matter with these people? Nothing the President does ever pleases them.
It sent my heart soaring this morning, however, when two pundits known for their good judgment, love of peace and respect for human rights came out strongly supportive of our President's address to the country last night.
In sum, the president seemed to me to go about as far as an anti-Iraq war president could go in praising the war effort: "We have persevered because of a belief we share with the Iraqi people—a belief that out of the ashes of war, a new beginning could be born in this cradle of civilization. Through this remarkable chapter in the history of the United States and Iraq, we have met our responsibility."
As for the second topic—"the ongoing security challenges we face"—the president's discussion of the fight against al Qaeda seemed to me adequate, given that he was not simply going to renounce the July 2011 transition date. "The pace of our troop reductions will be determined by conditions on the ground, and our support for Afghanistan will endure," was about as good as we were going to get...
The close, was, I thought, well done. The president located those who fought in Iraq in the unbroken line of those who, from Lexington to Kandahar, "gave their lives for the values that have lived in the hearts of our people for over two centuries" and who "have fought to see that the lives of our children are better than our own." There was a welcome implicit repudiation of Neville Chamberlain and appeasement, as President Obama praised our troops for having "fought in a faraway place for people they never knew."
And at the end: "Our troops are the steel in our ship of state. And though our nation may be traveling through rough waters, they give us confidence that our course is true, and that beyond the pre-dawn darkness, better days lie ahead." Not a bad tribute to the troops, and not a bad statement of the importance and indispensability of hard power.
And, on the whole, not a bad speech by the president.
Last night, President Obama did something amazing.
Now we're talking. (I checked BWG's diary to see if she had quoted this great review, but somehow she missed it.)
Finally a pundit with a big platform--a NYC newspaper!!!--who knows greatness when he sees it.
He gets into specifics:
Perhaps Obama did not even realize it, but when he said that "as the leader of the free world, America will do more than just defeat on the battlefield those who offer hatred and destruction -- we will also lead among those who are willing to work together to expand freedom and opportunity for all people," he was echoing ideas developed in neoconservative journals over decades of argument about how the United States can best project its power for its own sake and for the sake of the betterment of the world.
When he said that "we must use all elements of our power -- including our diplomacy, our economic strength and the power of America's example -- to secure our interests and stand by our allies," he was speaking in the voice of those neocons who argue that American geopolitical power is enhanced when we use it to bind our friends closer to us.
And when he said that "we must project a vision of the future that is based not just on our fears, but also on our hopes -- a vision that recognizes the real dangers that exist around the world, but also the limitless possibility of our time," Barack Obama was offering a more secular version of George W. Bush's assertion that liberty is not something unique to the American constitution, but is "God's gift to humanity."
And it meant something too that, for the first time, he spoke heartfelt words about his predecessor. "No one could doubt President Bush's support for our troops, or his love of country and commitment to our security," Obama said, knowing full well that tens of millions of people did doubt it and many thousands of activists who helped him get elected argued the opposite.
That's the way to stick it to those professional Lefty whiners!!!
Then the big wind-up:
Even more stunning, perhaps, is the fact that Obama was willing to use this nation's involvement in Iraq -- which he had opposed so completely and whose extension in the form of the surge in 2007 he argued against flatly -- as an example of what America can do when it puts its mind to it. "This milestone should serve as a reminder to all Americans that the future is ours to shape if we move forward with confidence and commitment," he said.
These are astonishing words to emerge from the mouth of Barack Obama, who has spent most of his public life and his presidency arguing that it is not the place of the United States to shape the future outside our borders -- that, in fact, such efforts to shape the future have harmed rather than helped this country and the world.
He went further still, issuing a quietly nationalist challenge to the world. The American victory in Iraq "should also serve as a message to the world that the United States of America intends to sustain and strengthen our leadership in this young century."
No wonder he was so nice to George W. Bush last night. The speech sounded like Bush. Not as eloquent or as memorable, but, hey, that's life.
I know what I'm going to be doing. No more Greenwald. No more Sirota. No more Maddow. I know where to get my news and commentary from now on.
William Kristol and The Weekly Standard. John Podhoretz and The New York Post.
One thing I can't quite understand, though. Both of those publications are owned by Rupert Murdoch. Isn't he the guy that owns Fox?
(Note to Yosef 52: you might want to take Kristol off that list of bad guys. Apparently, he's on our side now.)