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Monday, September 18, 2006

Meet the Press Debate, Part III

These are the last few nuggets I thought were worthy of note from yesterday's debate [This is the NBC transcript. Again, my comments in brackets.]:

MR. RUSSERT: Senator Allen, let me, let me just show you The Washington Times op-ed piece that you wrote in January of '05, and here'’s the headline:

"“Stay the course." What does that mean? How do you define victory in Iraq, and can it be won militarily?

SEN. ALLEN: Military and security aspects of it are absolutely essential. [At this point he lapses into total mindless regurgitation of talking points.] The people of Iraq have voted-last year three times, 70 percent turnout, walking like slow-moving targets to vote. [This one is a classic, I haven'’t heard it a while. I'’m surprised he didn'’t have purple ink on his finger (anybody remember that?). God bless those brave people but note to "Senator" Allen, it takes more than elections to have a Democracy.] And they do want a free and just society there, a country that does have respect for, for...

MR. RUSSERT: But what is staying the course?

SEN. ALLEN: Stay, staying the course is meaning that [Get ready for the smearing opponents of the war as cowards lightning round] we don'’t tuck tail and run, that we don't retreat, that we don't surrender. This is a central battle front in the war on terror, and it's not just the president or the vice president or me saying that [thank you for neatly summarizing who leads you.], that's what al-Qaeda says [that's what they say now], because al-Qaeda'’s designs and their goals are to have a caliphate, Islamic caliphate from, from Indonesia to Spain, with the capital being in Iraq, an oil-rich area. And we cannot allow Iraq, which-—where al-Qaeda was [gross mischaracterization bordering on bald-faced lie] and is now [because our invasion was a magnet for them], we cannot allow them...

MR. RUSSERT: Now, let me, let me show you, let me show, let me...

SEN. ALLEN: have that haven for terrorist activity. [Al-Queda will never be supported by the Iraqi regime as long as (Bush supported) Shiite elements are in control, which is likely to remain the case as they are the majority in the country -– Hizbullah, on the other hand could receive significant material support considering that Iran and Iraq, both Shia nations (like Hizbullah) are now coming together. Also, the large Shia crescent in the center of the fictional caliphate” will never acquiesce to being part of a Sunni dominant caliphate such as al-Queda supposedly wants.]

MR. RUSSERT: And this is what the Marine Corps has said about Anbar Province. "“The chief of intelligence for the Marine Corps in Iraq recently filed an unusual secret report concluding that the prospects for securing that country's western Anbar province are dim and that there is almost nothing the U.S. military can do to improve the political and social situation there, said several military officers and intelligence officials familiar with its contents." That's the military talking. What do we do? Do we seek a, seek a diplomatic solution, or stay the course militarily for years and years and years?

SEN. ALLEN: Anbar was always difficult to govern. [Really? And when did you learn that "Senator"? I can guarantee that you did not know that or anything else about Iraq before you voted to send our troops there.] The focus now is on the Baghdad area. [So to hell with Anbar and to hell with answering your question, Russert!] When I was over in Iraq back in June, whether they were Kurds, Sunni or Shiites, they were all very grateful to Americans for liberating them from Saddam's tyrannical regime. They all also recognize that the key for the country is to make sure there is better security in the Baghdad, the central area. [It is amazing how monolithic in opinion Iraqis are (in Allen's mind) considering their country is slipping into civil war.] The northern part, the Kurdish area, is doing very well. Gosh, they'’re even running advertisements for investment in the Kurdish area. [Thank you for pointing these out, I love them. No mention that they advertize themselves as "the Other Iraq", that's unity.] They're building homes, there'’s a convention center. [Perhaps the 2008 republican convention (where you will NOT be nominated for President) should be held there?] And the southern part, the Shiite part, is, is, is fairly stable, too. [And getting less stable everyday as the various elements of the Shiite political block (and their militias) are fighting with each other and not just Sunnis anymore.] The key right now, the focus, the adjustments, the adaptations that have been made, is to focus on the Baghdad area.

[This is getting too long. I guess there will be a part IV.]

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