RUSH: Both CNN and PMSNBC today have launched what I am calling their “Telethons to Purge the Surge.” It’s ridiculous. PMSNBC even has a countdown clock to the Bush speech tonight. It’s right now at eight hours, 52 minutes, 47 seconds and counting until the Bush speech. During this Telethon to Purge the Surge, they’re doing everything they can to defeat the policy before the president has even really announced it. The president invited both Democrats and Republicans to the White House yesterday to get a little preview of the speech, and of course it didn’t go over well with the Democrats, and the media says that it didn’t go over well with some of the Republicans that were there as well.
Some interesting headlines about all this. In the New York Observer today: ?After Huddle, Democrats May Punt on Iraq.? New York Times: ?Democrats Plan Symbolic Votes Against Bush’s Iraq Troop Plan.? And once again, we got symbolism over substance from them. They’re going to have votes with no teeth and they’re going to do hearings and so forth, and they’re going to express their opinion and all that. But when it boils down to cutting off funds for this, they are not going to do it. I wish they would, but they’re not that suicidal, ladies and gentlemen, not quite. Now, here’s the New York Observer story. ?Despite polls showing Americans overwhelmingly opposed to the war–? and by the way, you can find polls that show just the opposite. ?Despite polls showing Americans overwhelmingly opposed to the war, despite the mounting American military casualties, and despite the obvious ineffectiveness of the entire enterprise until now to bring stability to Iraq, Democrats at the very heart of the party?s anti-war wing still think the political costs would simply be too high,? to end America’s presence in Iraq via a spending cut.
Charles Rangel said, ?The President will say we?re in business with Osama bin Laden,? if we do this. ?Anytime, politically, you have to explain what you are saying, you have a problem. And so if I am there saying, ?Cut the funds for Iraq and the war in Iraq,? then someone is going to say, ?You are taking away rifles.?” Well, exactly. If you cut the funds, you are securing defeat. Take a look at Somalia, ladies and gentlemen. The Wall Street Journal has a great editorial today. Somalia indicates that an exit strategy does not guarantee victory. We had to go back in there with AC-130 gunships. How many years after Black Hawk Down? We don’t have any boots on the ground — well, none to speak of — but pulling out of there did not quell any violence, it didn’t solve anything. This is not how you defeat any military enemy, by the way, exiting or retreating. It’s just ridiculous and the Democrats know this.
One of the things I think that’s driving the Democrats here, they have a genuine anti-war wing, there’s no question about this, ladies and gentlemen, and they have been alive and kicking in earnest since the Vietnam War. But I think something else is to work here in addition to the genuine anti-war, anti-military, blame America first attitude that they have, and that is they see all the money spent on the war, and they want to spend it on other things themselves. They want to spend it on domestic issues; they want to spend it on expanding government’s role in people’s lives. That’s one of the reasons that they have an innate distaste for the military. It takes so much money out of their pockets, out of their hands, and denies them the opportunity to spend it on the things that they actually enjoy.
Here’s more from Rangel in this story, ?After Huddle, Democrats May Punt on Iraq.? ?A decorated Korean War veteran, Mr. Rangel seemed acutely sensitive to the potential consequences of voting against money for the troops: ‘If my black ass was in Korea during the war and people got fed up with it,’ he said, ‘and they cut off the money so I couldn?t get some snowshoes or underwear — well, goddamn, you are cutting the wrong people.’? He knows, despite all of his rhetoric before the election that he could de-fund the war, which was campaign rhetoric, what he knows is that the American people, whatever their opinion is on the war, are not going to stand for the American soldier being undercut. The American people may have an attitude that we can’t win this thing and it’s pointless. But if anybody takes action that undercuts the American soldier, other than a few wackos in the country, the vast majority of the people in this country are not going to stand for the soldiers being the victims of this little political fight going on in Washington.
They’re not going to look at Democrats as winners, they’re not going to look at Democrats as doing something courageous, they’re going to look at it as cutting the knees off of the troops, cutting them off at the knees, and Rangel knows this. ?So as President George W. Bush practiced his speech, scheduled to be delivered on Wednesday–? by the way, the countdown eight hours, 47 minutes, 39 seconds and counting, ?– a jubilant gavel-waving of Democrats threatening to slash Iraq spending amounted to an ostentatious display of ? their ability to hold hearings. ‘We could be having a hearing every day,’ said Representative James P. Moran of Virginia, a member of the defense subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, which is responsible for actually doling out the funds for the war. ‘We are going to be very busy.’ By conducting aggressive oversight hearings, Democrats do hope to at least pressure Mr. Bush to withdraw from Iraq by shining a spotlight on the billions of dollars that the administration has spent on a war that seems to be worsening by the day. ‘You don?t have to cut off funds,’ added Mr. Rangel. ‘Having public hearings causes the country to ask, ?What are the funds for? And what makes you think it is going to be effective???
So when push comes to shove, they don’t have the guts to stand behind their position of de-funding the war, they just don’t. They’re not going to do that. In the process of even talking about it, they’re really painting themselves here in a corner. You know, they’ve got this inflated sense of power, and they’re having such a ball with it, such a great time with it that they’re hardly noticing how it appears to people. I mean, for crying out loud, Ted Kennedy, the Senate did its best to keep Ted Kennedy hidden in a closet for a number of years but now he’s wormed his way out of there. They didn’t understand what he was saying half the time. Now he’s out there, he’s the voice, he’s the face of the Democratic Party, does he think, do they think people have forgotten Chappaquiddick? Is he the most credible person to be talking about this?
They have no power to stop this war unless they de-fund it, and as Ronaldus Magnus once said, ?Go ahead, make my day.? De-fund it, Democrats. Come on, you’ve been doing everything you can here, what’s this hold hearings to try to convince the American people? I thought the polls already showed the American people on your side, Congress Rangel? What do you need more hearings for to have people start questioning the war? According to you and your buds in the Drive-By Media you’ve got polling data out there that suggest the American people are fed up with this and want us out of there yesterday. But going to hold hearings to get the American people to ask questions? A disconnect there.
Now the New York Times. ?Democrats Plan Symbolic Votes Against Bush’s Iraq Troop Plan.? Oh, one other thing from the New York Observer story. ?Senator Ted Kennedy has introduced legislation to ban funding for troop increases over the Jan. 1 level, and he told the National Press Club on Tuesday that ‘Iraq is George Bush?s Vietnam.’?
That’s the speech we had the excerpts from yesterday, that I didn’t bother playing for you. He said, ?If we do not learn from the mistakes of the past,’ he said, ‘we are condemned to repeat them.? Senator Kennedy, you’re repeating the mistakes of Vietnam, you are and the Democratic Party are making the mistakes that we made in Vietnam. You are the ones making the mistakes, not the US military and not George W. Bush.
Tony Snow said yesterday, votes are symbolic. The war is real. ?We understand that their resolution to de-fund is purely symbolic but the war and the necessity of succeeding there is very, very real.? And so once again it’s the substance, and it’s victory that are being overlooked by the Democrats here as they mount their symbolic vote and roll into congressional hearings about all of this. But the real meaning of all of this when it gets down to the pedal to the metal time is, they have decided the American people will not understand them de-funding the war and they’ve come to the right conclusion about that.
RUSH: Okay, perusing some of the Drive-By Media today on this whole big story today about the surge and the effort by the drive-bys and the Democrats to purge the surge. By the way, remember, the big news in this story is not so much the additional 20,000 troops. They’re going to be acting in a backup or training capacity, but they are going to be in Baghdad. The big change here is the assurance of the Prime Minister, Maliki, that they’re going to go after the Shi’ites, the Shi’ite militia, the Shi’ite terrorists. Maliki’s bunch. They’re going to go after ’em. They’re not going to let these guys off scot-free. That’s been the problem up ’til now. The Sunnis have been targeted. The Shi’ites have been left alone by the Maliki government. He’s one of them. It has been one of the big concerns about the surge. If it goes wrong, are we empowering Maliki and the Shi’ites, which basically the same sect of Islam as are the Iranians. That’s been one of the concerns.
Everybody is saying, ?Can we trust Maliki?? The president says he thinks he can, after going through all of this. I mean, nobody wants the situation to continue the way it is. The idea to end it with a victory in a stable Iraq is a certainly far more valorous objective than just cutting-and-running and redeploying and getting out and leaving. If that happens, as we’ve discussed countless times, it’s only going to get worse. I still can’t get over this New York Times editorial from yesterday where we gotta pull out of there, but we gotta make sure that nothing goes wrong after we get out. We gotta protect the oil fields, we gotta make sure there’s no civil war, we gotta keep the Iranians out of there, but we gotta get out first, we gotta get out to do that. One of the most ridiculous assertions I have ever heard, and it could only be made by somebody who doesn’t sign their name to a stupid editorial in the newspaper, has thus no accountability.
Washington Post today: ?With Iraq Speech, Bush to Pull Away from his Generals.? No, that’s not it. Then the whole story goes into detail about it. Bush is not pulling away from his generals. He’s talking to other generals. He has decide he didn’t like the message he was getting from other generals. He’s put other generals in there who think they can accomplish what he wants to accomplish. McClellan and U. S. Grant were not alike. Lincoln had to switch generals in the Civil War, for crying out loud. Every little thing, picky, picky, picky. They wanted to get rid of all these guys, the media has been demanding, the Democrats been demanding, get rid of Rumsfeld, get rid of all these people, get rid of these people. Bush got rid of them, it still doesn’t make them happy, nothing makes them happy. Gotta get rid of Rice, gotta get rid of Cheney, gotta get rid of — wouldn’t change a thing. Give ’em everything they want, and it’s never enough.
Los Angeles Times: ?Storm Rises Over Surge.? Get this story. ?Is it a ‘surge?’ Is it an ‘escalation?’ Is it harmless semantics? Is it disingenuous spin? ? What infuriates critics of the war, including many liberal Democrats, is that they see ‘surge’ as a manipulative and deceptive word. It implies a relatively short-term increase in the U.S. military commitment, they say, when the White House intends to keep the additional troops in Iraq much longer, perhaps for several years. Even worse, critics say, the news media have uncritically accepted the word and thus contributed to deceiving the public.? Au contraire! It’s the exact opposite. They love the word surge; they can use it to try to discredit the policy. They’re using the word “surge” to imply massive new troops, massive new military movements.
They?re trying to get the American people to go, ?Oh, no, we’re going to get embroiled! My God, we gotta get everybody out.? That’s what they want to create. Now, in military parlance, according to some military officials, “?surge? has long been used in the armed forces to indicate a quick, not necessarily short-term, increase. Army Chief of Staff Peter J. Schoomaker, for example, used the term in testimony before the House Armed Services Committee in 2003, saying, ‘Now there is no question that there’s parts of Iraq that we need to surge troops into.’ In 2004, Gen. John P. Abizaid was quoted by Army Times as saying to a group of senior U.S. commanders.? So the Democrats, their argument here, the LA Times, is over the word “surge,” the use of word, and the Drive-By Media gets ripped for allowing the use of the word “surge.”
You know, folks, in the old days, not that many days ago, this would be going down very differently. The president of the United States has scheduled a major address to the nation tonight at nine o’clock. At a moment in our history when our nation’s become disenchanted with a war, that the Democrats overwhelmingly supported and the people overwhelmingly supported, and now demoralized by a daily diet of negative news and negative images, the president has a pretty big challenge. He has to rally support to rally the country, much like FDR had to do during the Battle of the Bulge. During the bloody early days of the war in the Pacific — Bataan, Tarawa, Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima — back then, the pond scum didn’t rise to the top. Today, the pond scum has risen to the top.