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Withdrawal Symptoms

Democrats' post-Zarqawi gloom. Also: Peanuts on D-Day. Australian intelligence. Plus much more.

6.12.06

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BUSINESS AS USUAL
Re: Andrew Cline's Withdrawn Democrats:

Thank you, Mr. Cline, for exposing the vulgar behavior by "withdrawn Democrats."

No, there was no rejoicing in Mudville, Vermont nor in the minds of rabid, leftist quislings concerning the just demise of Zarqawi. We have come to the conclusion that these anti- and un-Americans hold no pathways to be comprehended. They are so filled with pathological hate that rational, synoptic coherency -- even hard cold reality -- has no ameliorating impact on their very, very sick thought processes. Therefore, why make any attempt to engage them in any substantive discussion of issues? Their value lies in their revolting utterances and behavior which simultaneously alienate, yet motivate real American values in support of our troops and in our democratic processes.
-- William J. Bean, M.D., Ph.D.

Andrew Cline's editorial on June 9 about the muffled response of Democrats to the killing of the terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was dead-on. Nationwide, the response of Democrats to this major victory in the war on terror has been muted at best. Can what many suspect actually be true, that these blue-staters do not want to see anything happen in Iraq that might appear encouraging for the cause of democracy there, simply because they hate George W. Bush more than they love freedom, and would rather see Iraq devolve into another Somalia than see anything happen there that might improve Bush's poll numbers? I more than suspect it's so. Our daily newspaper here in Spokane, the Spokesman-Review(a paper solidly in the Democrat camp), carried a front-page headline on the very morning after al-Zarqawi's death was announced: ZARQAWI'S DEATH UNLIKELY TO SLOW VIOLENCE, EXPERTS SAY. I didn't stick around long enough to find out who these "experts" were, but I have a pretty good idea what their ideological interest probably is. The Democrats didn't wait until Zarqawi's body was cold before jumping in on all sides, trying to put negative "spin" on the story, trying to sell the idea that it was either a dubious victory or no victory at all.

I think it's true: these people hate George W. Bush more than they love freedom. How ironic that they're calling anyone who disagrees with them "fascist" and "mean-spirited." For sheer hate-choked venom, the left-wing blogs these days are outdoing the Voelkischer Beobachter, the flagship newspaper of Hitler's Nazi party.
-- Kelley Dupuis
Spokane, Washington

Three years of war, thousands of dead U.S. troops, hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis, and now we've got one dead al Qaeda guy and suddenly this is a whooping success? I honestly can't believe anyone with integrity can support this or any pre-emptive war. So while your views are of no real merit to me, I still feel obligated to exercise my freedom of speech while I'm still privy to it.

I'd like to point out that we lost this war at the same time we lost our dignity, at the beginning of it. It's a disgusting act of imperial might and desperate attempt to clench global domination.

You and your journalistic peers hold the future of this world firmly in your hands and yet you squander this power with senseless reporting of futile information. I strongly urge you to consider the possibilities of corruption amidst our own government and use your craft to disseminate the truth of this war to the American people so they can make an honest and fair appraisement of our current and future leadership no matter what side of the political landscape they might reside.

Thank you,
-- Jason Pebworth

Some thoughts on Andrew Cline's article:

I had always thought there were two categories of the anti-Iraq War folks: legitimate criticism (a la Pat Buchanan and the more reasonable Democrats), and treasonous comments (everybody else).

After reading the comments from the non-politicos in Cline's article, I'm convinced that we need to add a third category: the outright delusional. It's not enough to say that these folks are treasonous, because that would require a certain degree of rational thought. As long as these guys have a say in Democratic Party policy (via Daily Kos and other far-left websites), the Democrats are doomed to perpetual minority status.

The elected Democrats Cline quoted seem to realize this. Their statements were very tempered: no jubilation that the face of our enemy in Iraq is dead, yet little in the way of outright criticism of Bush, since this is a big moment. Also, just more of the same tired "Let's bring the troops home now even if it makes a bigger mess of Iraq because it's all Bush's fault anyway."

Suppose for a moment that we do bring home our troops in 2006. What then? Radical Muslims will destroy all of the hard work put in by our soldiers, including the hospitals, schools and housing that many of them have had a hand in creating (not that you've heard about any of this from CNN or the New York Times), and, of course, the fledgling democracy. Even worse, a bloody civil war will likely follow.

Who will Democrats blame then? George Bush, of course. Just as many Democrats voiced agreement that Saddam Hussein had to be removed back in 2002, now they are criticizing Bush for following through. Why wouldn't they criticize him even more for the crime of following their advice again? Ah, yes, it's great to be in the minority, and not have to be responsible for one's words and actions.

Al Zarqawi's death is a major cause of celebration, no matter where you stand in the war on Iraq, and the Democrats completely missed it. It's no wonder, then, that the party of Lincoln, as bad a state as it is in (spending, not fighting hard enough for the Federal Marriage Amendment, a growing federal government, the perceived mishandling of Katrina, etc.), likely will retain power in November. Why? Because the best thing Republicans have going for them right now is the Democrats.
-- Greg Hoadley
Deerfield Beach, Florida

Durbin, Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and the drive-by media is unhappy that a brutal Muslim terrorist was killed? These people want the terrorists to win, because they think it enhances their political power and that's more important than freedom or democracy any day. No matter what one's position on immigration is this should prove to all conservatives that the Democrats cannot retake power in Congress in November. We need to rally behind all GOP candidates and defeat the Democrats as we plan to defeat their "allies" the terrorists. If they (the Democrats) win the terrorists win.
-- Michael Tomlinson
Crownsville, Maryland

"The Democratic Party's goal is to end the conflict, not win the conflict, when it should be the other way around," writes Andrew Kline. So well put, sir.

As to the left's reaction to Zarqawi's losing his mojo last week, I see only one difference between the left-wing bloggers and the mainstream wing of the Democrat party: nuance, and nothing else. Disappointment is evident across the liberal spectrum, ranging from those who think killers like Zarqawi are "freedom fighters," and more traditional Democrats who sheepishly say they're glad he's gone, but then dismiss the blessed event in one way or another -- usually warning that failure is still possible. Somewhere in the mix is the petrified wing, who are so traumatized by Zarqawi's change of residence that they are unable to speak about it.

In understanding why this is so, look at history. The singular event that gave Democrats their greatest triumph was America's humiliating defeat in Vietnam. Their joy was only enhanced when the Communists rolled into Saigon and Phnom Penh to begin the slaughter. Instead of admitting that it was the presence of American military force that prevented those tragedies, Democrats blamed American military presence -- now absent -- for them. Such was the madness that still infects the true believers in the DNC today. Democrats have wanted to recapture that moment of glory for three decades, and Iraq (they fantasize) will at last give them what they want.

Zarqawi's death moves us one step closer to ultimate success in Iraq, and one step away from the liberals' new Vietnam. Bizarrely, the party named after democracy will do everything within its power to ensure that it is denied to the long-suffering Iraqis. As prospects for catastrophic failure in Iraq decrease, it is entirely predictable how the left will react. It is a strange movie. Have plenty of popcorn.
-- GnuCarSmell
Jacksonville, Texas

Democrats went to the same military academy that produced cartoonist Al Capp's general, Jubilation T. Cornpone, who always retreated, even when victory was assured. Not only did he retreat, he always led the retreat. Sound familiar?

Today's Republican politicians should be thanking the Almighty that their opponents are so bereft of American values. If it weren't for that, many of them would be going home after the upcoming elections.

For all the Republican's shortcomings on spending, immigration, taxes, growth of government, etc., they still might hang on to power, simply because the Democrats are so utterly clueless about what is important to the average American, promising to straighten out every problem, as soon as they extort enough money from the taxpayers to finally get it right.

The power structure of both parties is rotten to the core. Many individual congressmen and some senators deserve the support of the average American. If you must contribute to political causes, please don't send money to the National Party. Send it to those who support your ideals by their votes in Washington. This action might eventually change the culture in D.C. If it doesn't, Thomas Jefferson provided the only answer.
-- R. Goodson
Vero Beach, Florida

Andrew Cline noted what I did at the news of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi had being terminated from this world and any other by the exceptional work of our military, allies and CIA. The democrat's reaction was not just muted, but Ralph Cramden like! They hardly knew what to say. They wanted to condemn it, I'm certain, hoped it would fail, and I fully expected an "Oh yeah? So where's Osama?"

The Dem blogs were filled with the usual UFO visitation conspiracy theories. The usual suspects, Kerry, Pelosi and the Murtha did all they could to continue the undermining of the effort and fill the airwaves with their patented brand of defeatism. The Dems are not just invested in defeat it appears from all their words and actions, totally committed to it. Calling these people dangerous is a mild term. Having them remain in elected office presents a clear and present danger to our survival and well being as a nation. I've already suggested to the DNC they change their name to the Doomocrats!

Now is the time to record all their affronts against America and our way of life, and come November remove them from office never to let them return in any capacity where they might influence government, small children or stray cats!
-- Valdis Gailitis
Newbury Park, California

The reason so many Democrats have such "thoughtful" comments regarding the "death" (not killing of) Zarqawi is that the DNC money these days comes with leg-breaking interest from a collective that thinks the Republicans in general and George W. Bush is the real problem.

These same "cautiously" celebratory Dems have no problem coddling a Castro, Mugabe, Ortega, or a Chavez and even write glowingly about them. But they feign disdain for the democratically ELECTED and fledgling government in Iraq.
-- P. Aaron Jones
Huntington Woods, Michigan

You act like the Democrats being against the interest of America is a surprise. They have been doing every thing in their power to make America just like France, a sniveling cowardly place.

They do not want us to be strong, just look at the energy mess they have gotten us into. Don't drill or build refineries or even put wind turbines off the coast of one of their homes.

Now they are against doing away with the DEATH TAX that the rich don't pay anyway, they can afford to hire someone to figure out ways around it.

I hate when the Democrat Party is called the Democratic Party, there is nothing democratic about them, if you are not in lockstep with them then off with your head. Just look at what poor Joe is going thru.

Be very careful how you vote, don't cut your nose off to spite your face. Yes I am very upset over immigration, but the Dems are worse, they just want to open the borders to everyone.
-- Elaine Kyle
Texas

Al Zarqawi's ascent into Paradise, assisted by two F-16s and the lift-off of bombs bursting in on his "safe" house has plunged the Democrats into deeper despond. They are beyond disarray.

Poor Nancy Pelosi is neglecting her toilette. Her hair is askew. Her eyes, which have always had the look of a horse being led out of a burning barn, appear more alarmed than ever. She alternates this alarmed expression with the stunned, bewildered look of a cow that has just been pole-axed. Whatever thoughts she may have entertained about the House "needing a woman to clean it up" must now begin with taking Cynthia McKinney and William Jefferson to the restroom and treating them both to a "swirlie."

John Kerry has adopted the annoying habit of using "valiant," "courageous," "honorable" -- every superlative he can barf up to describe the troops, thinking this will erase our image of him testifying before a committee about the Vietnam crimes he fabricated to launch his illustrious career. When I see him these days, I think "John, why the long face?"

Harry Reid has assumed the demeanor of a cut-rate mortician, speaking in a funereal monotone whisper.

But California Rep. Fortney "Pete" Stark remains the panjandrum we can rely upon to occasionally be-stir himself and say something incredibly stupid, which he did today. I am sorry Mr. Cline did not quote it. When Pete Stark comes to mind -- and I try to avoid that -- I am reminded of a question posed in jest, never answered.

If, by some miracle, we get Osama, we better put him in a holding tank somewhere because if we trotted him out right now, the Dems would gather on the green, get out their Zippo lighters and self-immolate.
-- Diane Smith
South San Francisco, California

I think, Mr. Cline, "For What It's Worth," Stephen Stills's paranoia still strikes, only deeper.
-- Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

CHARLIE BROWN SCHULTZ
Re: R. Andrew Newman's A Charlie Brown D-Day:

Thank you Mr. Newman for reminding me of what grand gentleman Charles "Sparky" Schultz was. I got to know Sparky during frequent trips to his ice arena in Santa Rosa, California, where each year he hosted a hockey tournament for a bunch of us old time skaters, 40 and above. His generosity was unparalleled, he not only donated all the ice time and paid the referees but also treated us to a welcoming cocktail hour and sit down dinner banquet. One of the highlights of the week was a tour of his studios where he produced the Charlie Brown comic strip. And he not only was the host but a participant as well playing hockey well into his 70s.

His Charlie Brown comic strip was not only entertaining but conveyed a message honor, duty, fair play and patriotism.
-- Tom Bullock
West Covina, California

I enjoyed R. Andrew Newman's article "A Charlie Brown D-Day" and agree with his sentiment about not letting June 6, 1944 drift from our memory.

I am reading Major Dick Winter's book Beyond a Band of Brothers and felt it appropriate this past Tuesday to watch episode 2 of A Band of Brothers -- "Day of Days." What those men faced on that day is unimaginable in today's world and, in may corners of the country, very unappreciated.

My wife and I took the time to visit Normandy while on our honeymoon last year and are so grateful we did. We walked in the craters created by the bombs at Point-du-Hoc, then through the American Cemetery and then on the sand at Omaha Beach. The importance of that region can still be felt today.

Here's to America's best and a REAL reason to celebrate 6-6-06!
-- David Wholihan

It is no longer acceptable to celebrate the militaristic successes of America. Such commemorative events can only be given notice if the events can be made to emphasize the inhumanity of war and the obscenity of personal sacrifice for a homeland. Duty, Honor, Country! What an outmoded and wrong concept.

Virtually every day I find a new reason that I am glad that I was born in America at the time that I was. Virtually every day I am glad that I am not growing up in the America I see around me today. Life truly was better when we the people were more family, community, and societal oriented and less self oriented. Remember when we took a moment to consider how our words and/or deeds might affect our neighbors, and voluntarily altered our behavior accordingly? I do! Yeah, we had less "stuff" and less advanced "stuff." but has modern advanced technological been a totally unmixed blessing? Is the goal to live longer and have more toys, or to live better, and what does better mean in this context? We shall each have to answer that question for ourselves alone.
-- Ken Shreve

I am 38. Apparently my vague and basic understanding of WWII could use some context. Thank you. With a lump in my throat, thank you.
-- Kristin
Michigan

Thank you, R. Andrew Newman, for a most moving piece!
-- Gretchen L. Chellson
Alexandria, Virginia

DROP FROM DOWN UNDER
Re: George H. Wittman's The Missing Intelligence Ingredient:

I just read your article where the missing intelligence ingredient is -- lawyers. I have got news for you, pal -- the missing intelligence ingredient is common sense. America has intelligence agencies that have analysts -- what happened to spies? The Russians alone were reputed to have 300 spies working out of the UN during the Cold War, but I guess they were stupid and didn't know jack about running an intelligence service. What do the analysts do if there are no spies to give them material for analysis -- do they read the New Times? Considering they write the New York Times, they are reading their own columns and quoting them back! What a racket -- can I get a job like that? Also, as well as hiring some spies, get rid of the idiots who are so stupid that they hire people who don't understand that they have to keep their mouths shut about secrets. Don't hire lawyers for these morons, get rid of them, give them a job in the Post Office or tell them to run for Congress -- that is the usual career path for people who are incompetent but still want to work for the government.

Five years after 911 and these are the ideas that permeate the defense establishment. How pathetic, how sad, how dismal for America and all those who place their hopes on the country's greatness and moral fiber. My money is on the mullahs, they won't be beaten by a crowd this damn silly.
-- Christopher Holland
Canberra, Australia

A MILESTONE IN IRAQ
Re: John Tabin's End of the Beginning:

Finally, good news immune to spin (though they'll try), which cannot be ignored by the left, about American's supreme concern, Iraq. Back in April, TAS had a piece by Quin Hillyer, "Bad News Everywhere I Look." After listing many of the reasons for conservative gloom, he left us with this hope for the future:

Win in Iraq, demonstrably and definitively, and the United States will be vindicated, as will, in domestic politics, the administration that fumbled and stumbled but never lost its will or its admirable aims. And victory over the terrorists in Iraq, a victory for republican government every bit as lasting as the ones post-World War II in West Germany and Japan, is indeed still possible. A government is on the verge of being stabilized there. The terrorists are ever more desperate, and by some reports running out of weapons materiel. The good guys -- the Americans and our allies -- can win this thing. And silence the critics. And strike a mighty blow for freedom.

We can now make a substantial case to the American people that Iraq has been worth our blood and treasure. Problem is, will the White House aggressively make that case? And when?

And, as a bonus, Hillary was too busy cat-fighting with Ann Coulter to notice.
-- Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

Having read Mr. Tabin's piece, I couldn't help but wonder how the Liberal Media would frame its pejorative commentary on the demise of Zarqawi. I did not have long to wait. I watched Michael Isikoff on one of the liberal commentary networks explaining that Zarqawi's death was meaningless as most of the terror around the world was being perpetrated by independent cells and Mr. Zarqawi really did not figure into the mix as importantly as President Bush indicated. The fact that Zarqawi was responsible for thousands of deaths of both Iraqis and Americans, and that up until his death, the Liberal Media has placed him in the vanguard of jihadis as far as both ruthlessness and effectiveness were concerned did not find its way into Mr. Isikoff's commentary,

It's too bad that Mr. Isikoff wasn't around for the death of Admiral Yamamoto during the Second World War. He probably would have sluffed it off saying that Hideki Tojo was the real orchestrator of events just as he now insists that Osama Bin Ladin is. I don't know about the rest of the world, but I for one would like to see Mr. Isikoff's bona fides as an expert on this or any other situation involving terrorism. I hope that he has a myriad of degrees from prestigious universities. He better, because he has no common sense whatsoever.
-- Joseph Baum
Garrettsville, Ohio

I note today's media reports that Mr. al-Zarqawi was alive briefly before his final departure for Hell. It pleases me to suspect that his last earthly vision may have been the U.S. flag patch on the arm of an American soldier.
-- Mark K. Zunk
Indianapolis, Indiana

SOLDIER SUPPORT
Re: Ben Stein's Keeping the Faith and Roy R. McMillan's letter (under "More Thanks to Ben") in Reader Mail's Who We Are:

I was very touched by the heartfelt message that you wrote. It is good to know that there are some people out there who are willing to voice their appreciation. I just wanted to let you know that I am proud of my brothers and sisters at arms also. I love the Army, I love my life, but I love my families and my countrymen's lives even more! That is why I am willing to do what ever it takes to do my part in keeping them safe!

Very Respectfully,
--Kyeyahn Belanger
SSG, US A
J1/Manpower & Personnel
Administration NCO
NATO School

THE THIRD WAY
Re: Andrew Cline's The Task at Hand:

Andrew Cline's commentary in "The Task at Hand" reminds us that power corrupts. Republicans in Washington, D.C., are as bad as Democrats who do not respect the chains placed upon the Federal government by the Constitution.

We voters should remember George Washington's wise advice not to be bound to political parties ("factions" is the old-fashioned word). Our current system is biased in favor of Republicans and Democrats, but a "third party" candidate who really believes that the Constitution still applies deserves consideration.
-- John Notgrass
Gainesboro, Tennnessee

SELF-CONSTRUCTION
Re: Jim Antley's letter (under "Crockerfight Continued") in Reader Mail's Who We Are:

I simply MUST express appreciation for Jim Antley letter under Crockerfights. Being of like mind, I loved hearing about another self-reliant American not afraid to tackle some construction tasks.

Having been burned by a number of "contractors," "repair man," and other con artists, I decide long ago that I'm at least as capable of screwing things up as they are, and for a lot less. A few years ago, my wife and I took on the task of re-roofing our home, complete with stripping off all the old shingles. As Jim said, sure, you make mistakes, and there is a slight learning curve. Things like learning not to step back and admire your work after laying the first three courses of shingles. Luckily, it's a ranch style house and the resulting fall mostly wounded just my pride. But after it was all done, I KNEW the job was done correctly.

Changing the oil, breaks, shocks, whatever, it all comes down to knowing the job is done right and that I/we did it ourselves is very rewarding.

Now, let's get working on that new deck…
-- Karl F. Auerbach
Eden, Utah

INCOMPARABLE WORTH
Re: Jay D. Homnick's Mistaken Identity:

Mr. Homnick, thank you for the reminder. I would identify you as a treasure, unmistakably!
-- Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

AFTER HOURS
Re: John Tabin's End of the Beginning and James G. Poulos's Requiem for a Nightmare and Stephen Foulard's letter (under "No Raisins Today") in Reader Mail's Explosive Events:

Now, really, Mr. Foulard. I realize "Virginia is for Lovers," but I doubt you could find 72 of them willing to meet Zarqawi for happy hour after work, much less for anything else after life.
-- Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

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