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Sunday, September 09, 2007


Iraq - "Accentuate the Positive"


(Johnny Mercer / Harold Arlen)

You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
Latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

The song made famous by Bing Crosby. Source: Lyrics Collection

That is what the president and his team are doing. By now the whole world is aware of what the thrust of General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker's report to the Joint Session of the Armed Services and International Relations Committees on Monday, September 10th, will be. There is not much they can say to to buttress the president's position. The Bush team went on full scale containment effort when the GAO (U.S. Government Accounting Office) report released last week made it clear that the situation in Iraq cannot be whitewashed by General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker.

Democratic Senator Joseph Biden's statement today, reported by NY Times, repeats what has been known for some time:

  • “This president has no plan how to win and/or how to leave,” said Mr. Biden, before whose committee General Petraeus and Mr. Crocker will testify on Tuesday. He accused Mr. Bush of putting American troops “into the middle of a civil war to maintain the status quo,” adding, “that is unconscionable, and he’s wrong.”
In recent days it began to feel as though among the Democrats some erstwhile critics of the president's war were ready to roll over. Senator Biden's remarks indicate that President Bush and the Republicans will have few, if any, converts.

  • “This is the president’s war,” he said. “Unless we get 67 votes to override his veto, there’s nothing we can do to stop this war, but we must, we must, we must protect these troops.”
The Republicans' hope is to be able to protract the war until 2008 when the new president will have to deal with the mess and the current incumbent of the White House, in his own words, will be busy giving speeches to "replenish the ol' coffers". Outwardly, Republican presidential contenders are mostly pro-Bush, pro-war. If they are unhappy about the prospect they are not going to talk in public about it. A group of men ready to inherit the mess for the sake of being president.

If a Democratic contender, man or a woman, wins the presidency, expect a sea change as the Republican hawks become critics of the war and begin to talk about casualties.

For now the White House PR machine is in full blast accentuating the positive. Their problem is that the negatives cast an overwhelmingly larger shadow over the president's pet war.


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