Say, has anyone asked Dick Gephardt if this falls under “miserable failure”?
Obviously we’ll have to wait for all the politics to play out, but at this stage it’s hard to say which was worse for Howard Dean: the capture of Saddam Hussein or Al Gore’s endorsement. Until Sunday, Gov. Mean’s big applause line in speeches has been to sneer about the Bush Administration’s failure to catch Saddam Hussein. It seems the governor is better at prescribing bitter pills than at swallowing them.
In a speech to the Pacific Council the day after Saddam was captured, Dean nearly choked on the words, “The capture of Saddam is a good thing,” and then quickly added, “but the capture of Saddam has not made America safer.” (Possible headline: “Dean Says Saddam’s Capture Good Thing, Just Not Really Good Thing.”) If George W. Bush announced that a cure for cancer had been discovered, Democrats would complain about unemployed laboratory rats.
Liberals are against terrorism in a theoretical sense, but they oppose any concrete action to stop it (which is kind of how I feel about that whole Ashton Kutcher/Demi Moore business). They are unhappy the World Trade Center was bombed, and that’s about all one can say with certainty. They talk about 9/11 as if it was a cholera epidemic. Liberals would try to share in the joy over Saddam’s capture, except they are so blue that we haven’t let the French take over the United States yet.
On Fox News Sunday, Sen. John F. Kerry (D.-Mass.) said of Saddam’s capture: “This is a great opportunity for this President to get it right for the long term. And I hope he will be magnanimous, reach out to the U.N., to allies who’ve stood away from us.”
It’s as if he were reading my mind! After listening to all the bellyaching from European leftists for the past eight months, I think I speak for all Americans when I say I’ve been on tenterhooks waiting for the right opportunity to grovel to the French. And now we have it-a major win is the perfect opportunity! That Kerry has an uncanny sense for what the average American is thinking.
Actually, he lost me with that one. Maybe it’s a good opportunity for the French and the United Nations to reach out to us, but by what logic is this an opportunity for us to reach out to them? As I understand it, the situation is: We caught Saddam. So the obvious next move is . . .
- (a) Put him on trial.
(b) Get information from him.
(c) Torture him.
(d) Turn him over to the Iraqis.
(e) Appeal to the French.
What was interesting about Kerry’s suggestion was that it was the exact same suggestion liberals were making when they claimed the war was going badly. The day before Saddam’s capture, The New York Times editorialized: “The way to deal with all that is going wrong in Iraq remains as clear as it was on the day that Mr. Bush declared an end to major combat operations. … Instead of driving away France, Germany, Russia and Canada with financial sanctions, the president should be creating the room for compromise …” Damn that Bush. He squandered the good will of a bunch of people who hate our guts.
Apparently, this is what liberals mean by “a plan”:
In 24 months, Bush has perceptibly degraded terrorist operations throughout the world. The rebuilding in Iraq is going better than could possibly be expected. Liberals don’t care. They just want to turn everything over to the French. (And, apparently, the recent capture of Saddam presents us with a golden opportunity to do so!) The Birchers were right about these people. They believe in world government more than they believe in the United States.
In fact, with Saddam Hussein’s capture, the real question on most people’s minds was: Who was the last chump to make a snippy remark about Bush’s not finding Saddam? We’re still taking votes, but the current winner is … Frank Rich. On the very day Saddam’s capture was revealed to the world, The New York Times ran an article by Frank Rich discussing the Lord of the Rings movies. Rich wrote: “[T]he evil wizard Saruman (Christopher Lee), has vanished -as out of sight, if not mind, as Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.”
One strongly suspects that the White House sat on the story of Saddam’s arrest for a day so the Times could put out its regular Sunday bad news: “A Baghdad Neighborhood, Once Hopeful, Now Reels As Iraq’s Turmoil Persists,” “Saboteurs, Looters and Old Equipment Work Against Efforts to Restart Iraqi Oil Fields,” “It’s Going to Be a Bloody Christmas,” “Dean Strives for a Nuanced Approach to Foreign Policy.” The New York Times hasn’t looked this foolish … well, I guess since the day before.
Liberals should perk up. It’s not all bad news. True, Saddam Hussein has been captured. But Norman Mineta is still at large.