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RUSH: I always get a big laugh when the Drive-By Media writes about something in the context that the Drive-By Media isn’t covering it, and it happened yesterday in the Washington Post. The lead editorial. ‘The Iraqi Upturn’ is the headline. ‘Don’t look now, but the US-backed government and army may be winning the war.’ Don’t look now? (laughing) The Drive-Bys are trying not to look! They don’t want to see this. This is upsetting every apple cart known to the media. I want to take you back. I asked a question maybe a year ago, nine months ago when the Democrats — led by Dingy Harry and Nancy Pelosi and all the rest of them, and Obama — were running on and on and on about how the surge will not work. Remember the Petraeus ad in the New York Times by MoveOn.org? Remember the insulting questioning that he got from Mrs. Clinton, having to have ‘a willing suspension of disbelief,’ accusing him of lying about the success of the surge; Nancy Pelosi saying, ‘Don’t you come up here and lie to us about how well it’s going. That’s not what we want to hear,’ and so forth and so on? I asked a rhetorical question at the time. I said, ‘Suppose… What happens if this thing works and it works well, and just suppose the president’s approval numbers start coming up as a result of it?

‘Obama has made his number one qualification to be president the fact that he never approved of the Iraq war, that he knew from the beginning it was a disaster, that he never supported it like Mrs. Clinton did.’ Now he’s gotta find a way to find a graceful way out of this, and the Washington Post has come along and given him that. Let me give you a couple excerpts from their editorial yesterday. ‘There’s been a relative lull in news coverage and debate about Iraq in recent weeks — which is odd…’ This is sort of like me telling you, folks, ‘It’s really strange I haven’t talked about this. I wonder why.’ Really, it’s like me beating myself up. Seriously. I’m not trying to be funny. ‘There’s been a relative lull in news coverage and debate about Iraq in recent weeks — which is odd, because May could turn out to have been one of the most important months of the war. While Washington’s attention has been fixed elsewhere, military analysts have watched with astonishment as the Iraqi government and army have gained control for the first time of the port city of Basra and the sprawling Baghdad neighborhood of Sadr City, routing the Shiite militias that have ruled them for years and sending key militants scurrying to Iran.

‘At the same time, Iraqi and US forces have pushed forward with a long-promised offensive in Mosul, the last urban refuge of al-Qaeda. So many of its leaders have now been captured or killed that US Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker, renowned for his cautious assessments, said that the terrorists have ‘never been closer to defeat than they are now.’ Iraq passed a turning point last fall when the US counterinsurgency campaign launched in early 2007 produced a dramatic drop in violence and quelled the incipient sectarian war between Sunnis and Shiites. Now, another tipping point may be near, one that sees the Iraqi government and army restoring order in almost all of the country, dispersing both rival militias and the Iranian-trained ‘special groups’ that have used them as cover to wage war against Americans. It is — of course — too early to celebrate; though now in disarray, the Mahdi Army of [Mookie] al-Sadr could still regroup, and Iran will almost certainly seek to stir up new violence before the US and Iraqi elections this fall. Still, the rapidly improving conditions should allow US commanders to make some welcome adjustments…’

Then we move on to page two. ‘If the positive trends continue, proponents of withdrawing most US troops, such as Mr. Obama, might be able to responsibly carry out further pullouts next year. Still, the likely Democratic nominee needs a plan for Iraq based on sustaining an improving situation, rather than abandoning a failed enterprise.’ You cannot get any more explicit than this from the Drive-By Media: the lead editorial in yesterday’s Washington Post warning Obama — Hey, pal, your plan of getting out of there as a failed enterprise is up in smoke. You better start figuring out a way to plan for Iraq based on sustaining an improving situation. How does Obama do this with any credibility when all he has said is that it is a failure; it has no chance; it is doomed and we are doomed to defeat? I’m looking for an audio sound bite here because we have one on this, and it is from the lovely and gracious Mika Brzezinski. Let’s see. Grab audio sound bite number 20. This is it. Mika Brzezinski this morning on Joe Scarborough’s program on MSNBC. The New York Times reporter John Harwood says, I don’t think Americans have forgotten Iraq.

BRZEZINSKI: You know what? I think Americans are tired of being duped, and I think this is coming back from the McClellan book. Everyone talks about how Americans want to win. I don’t know so much with Iraq.

RUSH: So all this good news on Iraq, Mika Brzezinski of DNCTV (also known as MSNBC) says, ‘Well, I don’t think Americans care. They don’t care. They don’t care if we’re winning.’ Really? Obama has got a problem. The Democrats have a problem. I speculated about this long ago. The one what-if that no one was discussing, and nobody’s discussing it now — and it’s a long shot, I admit. But so is this: Six weeks ago, much less six months ago, did you ever think that you would read or hear in an editorial in the Drive-By Media, the Washington Post, talking about how the war can be won; that Obama better shift his position to sustaining an improving situation rather than abandoning a bad one? That was just as big a long shot as this one is. What if, before the election, Bush’s folly becomes Bush’s triumph? What if before the election, President Bush’s approval numbers go up? They’ve been hovering where, 32 to 25%? What if they hit 40? What if they start rising? What if there’s a trend line of Bush approval numbers going up?

How many years did it take for Seward’s folly — that is, the Alaska purchase — to be recognized as a stroke of genius? I mean, when Seward purchased Alaska, people said, ‘Oh, my, what a stupid waste of money,’ but now look. How many years will it take for Bush’s folly, a/k/a the mission in the Middle East, to become one? What if it turns out to be right in the next five months instead of the next five years or 50 years? It’s possible. When was the last time you heard we lost the war? When was the last time you heard we can’t win the war? When was the last time you heard the surge can’t work? When was the last time you heard the surge isn’t working? When was the last time you heard the surge won’t work? When was the last time you heard, ‘We’ve already lost’? Well, as recently as two months ago and as recently as exactly one year ago — actually, 14 months ago now when Dingy Harry was waving the white flag of surrender. How long has it been since you heard, ‘Our troops are caught in the crossfire of civil war! Our troops have no business being in the midst of a civil war’?

How long has it been since you heard, ‘Why isn’t the Iraqi government meeting its benchmarks?’ Remember that? The benchmarks an incompetent US Congress couldn’t meet itself put on the Iraqis, and they kept asking, ‘Why aren’t their benchmarks being met? There’s no political progress here.’ When was the last time you heard that success of the Petraeus strategery, the surge, calls for ‘a suspension of disbelief’? Something is happening out there, and it will become apparent to all sooner if not later. But this is the question. What if it becomes apparent to all sooner? The mainstream media says, not a chance. Washington Post writes this piece as though they’re innocent bystanders and spectators: ‘How come the media is not covering this?’ To which you ask, ‘Well, where the hell is this on the front page? Why is this on the editorial page? Where is this story on the front page? ‘ Ask yourself, is anybody in the Drive-By Media today as respected as the great journalist Horace Greeley was? (chuckling) You remember Horace Greeley. ‘Go West, young man.’ One of the most severe critics of Seward’s folly was the very same Horace Greeley, in the then mainstream New York Tribune.

Now, there wasn’t any television at the time, it was the 1860s, and so when you hear the what-ifs, ‘Well, what if Mrs. Clinton goes to Denver? Well, what if the McClellan book kills McCain’s chances? Well, what if Hillary supports Obama? What if Hillary doesn’t support Obama? What if the Hillary backers stay home?’ There’s that one other what if: What if something happens in Iraq that shifts Bush’s folly into Bush’s triumph? Where does that leave the Democrats who have built their entire nominating process on the folly of Bush’s war? Now, why did the Washington Post do this piece? I suspect they did it and they put it on the editorial page to get it out of the way. So that at least one Drive-By organ can say, ‘Hey, we reported it,’ and then wash their hands of it. I’ll be surprised if the Drive-Bys pick it up. This does not fit the story line, doesn’t fit the action line, doesn’t fit the template. I doubt that we will see any significant reporting of this. But if the news continues to improve, it may be hard for them to continue to ignore it, and if — big IF — but if Bush’s numbers start going up as a result of this, you think there’s chaos in the Democrat Party now? Just wait.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Vince in Victoria, Minnesota, I’m glad you waited. Welcome to the program, sir.

CALLER: Yes, sir. Yes, sir, thank you for having me on here. Rush, if I could first make a very quick point regarding that last caller that you spoke to. I think, honestly, I’m coming to the conclusion that we need to rename the political parties: one is the globalist Democrats, the other is, you might call them the American conservatives or something like that, we begin to understand what our geopolitical choices are, that is, I think everything falls into place quickly. But the real reason I called, and you had spoken a while ago about Iraq and the improving situation there, really I think it’s time for Republicans to finally start speaking out with much more confidence about the Middle East, which is already in historic transformation. Where we gonna be in a few years with America-friendly governments in Iraq and Turkey and Afghanistan? If all that falls into place, I think the mullahs in Iran have to go away also or they will inevitably be turned out also. Any agreement about that, any comment about that?

RUSH: Well, I’ve got something here, and let me see if I can find it real quick that relates to something that you just said. It’s in the American Thinker by Jeff Lukens: ”Was the Iraq War Worth It?’ — Before the war, state sponsors of terrorism in the Middle East were Iran, Syria, Libya and Iraq. Today, only Iran and Syria remain.’ Libya no longer a state sponsor of terrorism and abandoned its nuclear program, and of course we all know what’s happened to Iraq, Saddam’s gone, and they are no longer state sponsors of terrorism. Iraq has become a country where terrorism has been defeated in the Middle East. So you ask an interesting question. If we do end up successfully here — we’ve got a pro-American government in Afghanistan, we have a pro-American government in Iraq. The Iraq government’s pretty close to self-sustaining itself, major victory there. Pro-American government in Turkey. You think the Republicans need to get more confident about the success of the policies and so forth in the Middle East. You’re right. Republicans need to get more confident, period. Look it, this is why I mentioned earlier in the program there are all kinds of what-ifs that people ask out there, but a year ago I thought it was fascinating because the Democrats were so invested in defeat, they owned it, and we hadn’t been defeated, and I said what happens if this turns out really positive, what happens if Iraq box an undeniable huge success and win, and what happens if Bush’s approval numbers start going up?

Right as we get into the summer and the fall of the 2008 election? Can you imagine the shakeup that will be an entire political party, the Democrats structuring themselves on the defeat of the US military in Iraq and the war on terror. They’ve raised millions of dollars on it. At least half if not more of the Democrat Party base is made up of lunatics who want this country to lose. They are so poisoned with their hatred, their personal hatred, their irrational personal hatred of George W. Bush that they have steered this party into a corner. And it is looking like they are going to be profoundly embarrassed. They are going to nominate a candidate on the basis of many things. One of the things is, ‘He was always against the Iraq war, he knew. He was the smartest guy in the room. He never supported this war. He knew it was a loser.’ Now, if he wins the presidency he may inherit a circumstance where we are victorious, and does he have the mettle to admit that, or will he continue on because of the requirement he be loyal to this kook fringe base of the Democrat Party? Will he continue to say that this is a defeat? Will he continue to say that this is a defeat? Will he say all these stories about success in Iraq, they were lies to try to shake up the election, that we can’t win there, we never were going to win there, we had no business going there. This party is in such a mess, and it is so painful. It is so painful to see my own beloved party nowhere near being positioned to take maximum advantage of it.

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