Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Writing an op-ed in today’s Washington Post, Liz Cheney shows that she’s as formidable intellectually as her parents.

We are at war. America faces an existential threat. This is not, as Speaker Nancy Pelosi has claimed, a “situation to be solved.” It would be nice if we could wake up tomorrow and say, as Sen. Barack Obama suggested at a Jan. 11 hearing, “Enough is enough.” Wishing doesn’t make it so. We will have to fight these terrorists to the death somewhere, sometime. We can’t negotiate with them or “solve” their jihad. If we quit in Iraq now, we must get ready for a harder, longer, more deadly struggle later.

In their “race to the bottom”, most Democrats and a handful of wobbly Republicans avoid the reality of the situation. They’re showing their willingness to prove bin Laden right. They’re willing to prove that we’ll eventually abandon our allies and shirk our responsibilities to ourselves. Almost no consideration is given to national security. Almost no consideration is given to the fact that abandoning Iraq would embolden the terrorists, create an Iranian puppet regime in Baghdad and give terrorists a training ground.

Frankly, the thought of a Speaker Pelosi is frightening, especially with her saying that terrorism is a “situation to be solved.” That’s dangerously naive. It isn’t a situation to be solved. It’s a war we must win. PERIOD.

When al Qa’ida crashed the planes into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, it was a genuine act of war. We didn’t talk then that the terrorists behind 9/11 were a “situation to be solved.” The vast majority of Americans then thought that bin Laden’s bunch of terrorists were scum of the earth that had to be killed ASAP. Al Qa’ida still wants to kill us. That means that they’re still the scum of the earth who still need to be killed ASAP.

Here’s a couple other key points that Ms. Cheney makes:

Quitting helps the terrorists. Few politicians want to be known as spokesmen for retreat. Instead we hear such words as “redeployment,” “drawdown” or “troop cap.” Let’s be clear: If we restrict the ability of our troops to fight and win this war, we help the terrorists. Don’t take my word for it. Read the plans of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and Ayman Zawahiri to drive America from Iraq, establish a base for al-Qaeda and spread jihad across the Middle East. The terrorists are counting on us to lose our will and retreat under pressure. We’re in danger of proving them right.

Beware the polls. In November the American people expressed serious concerns about Iraq (and about Republican corruption and scandals). They did not say that they want us to lose this war. They did not say that they want us to allow Iraq to become a base for al-Qaeda to conduct global terrorist operations. They did not say that they would rather we fight the terrorists here at home. Until you see a poll that asks those questions, don’t use election results as an excuse to retreat.

Last night, I wrote about an ABCNews article here, which said:

Sources tell ABC News that the plot may have involved moving between 10 and 20 suspects believed to be affiliated with al Qaeda in Iraq into the United States with student visas, the same method used by the 19 al Qaeda terrorists who struck American targets on Sept. 11.

This is hard proof that al Qa’ida is still plotting terrorist attacks against us. This is hard proof that al Qa’ida still hopes to kill us by the hundreds and the thousands. What part of that doesn’t Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama or Nancy Pelosi understand? If they want to take the approach that this is an optional war with little impact on national security, why haven’t they cut off funding for this war? Why should they be putting forth non-binding resolutions on the war? Shouldn’t they be proposing genuine budget restrictions that force the President’s hand?

The truth is that Democrats prefer not taking a principled stand on the GWOT. They prefer simply disagreeing with anything that President Bush says. That isn’t leadership. That’s intellectual cowardice. They’re no longer willing to acknowledge that Iraq is part of that GWOT. Remember numerous Democrats saying that (I’m paraphrasing here) “al Qaeda wasn’t in Iraq until we invaded.” Implicit in that statement is that these Democrats knew that al Qa’ida was a threat to Iraq’s government and our national security. Now they’re tired of the fight and want to quit. They just don’t want to use that word because they don’t want to be thought of as losers who quit the moment the going gets tough.

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