Monday, June 2, 2008

Iraq, the Fall Of Al Qaeda, & Surrealism

Victor Davis s Hanson writes on the evidence of success in Iraq, the role of that success in the larger defeat of al Qaeda and discrediting of radical Islam, and the surreal posturing of the anti-war crowd here in America.

This from Victor Davis Hanson writing at NRO:

How odd (or to be expected) that suddenly intelligence agencies, analysts, journalists, and terrorists themselves are attesting that al-Qaeda is in near ruins, that ideologically radical Islam is losing its appeal, and that terrorist incidents against Americans at home and abroad outside the war zones are at an all-time low—and yet few associate the radical change in fortune in Iraq as a contributory cause to our success.

But surely the US military contributed a great deal to the humiliation of al-Qaedists and the bankruptcy of their cause, since it has (1) killed thousands of generic jihadists, and to such a degree that the former Middle East romance of going to Iraq to fight the weak crusaders is now synonymous with a death sentence and defeat; (2) provided the window of security necessary for the growing confidence of the Maliki government whose success is absolutely destroying the Islamist canard that the U.S. backs only dictatorships. Indeed, al-Qaeda's greatest fear is successful Arab constitutional government; something still caricatured here at home as a neocon pipe dream.

In addition, the grotesque tactics that al-Qaeda in duress developed in Iraq weakened its case throughout the Middle East; . . .

I would expect the Maliki government to gain greater respect abroad, and maybe it will cease to be the punching bag here at home, given its recent accomplishments—made possible by the efforts of the U.S. military. . . .

Read the entire article. I would add that al Qaeda's greatest fear of a constitutional democracy in the Middle East is also the greatest fear of the radical Iranian theocracy's. Compare Hanson's piece with Andrew J. Sullivan who sees the success we are having as all the more reason to make an "expeditious withdrawl." He does not explain the tortured logic that could lead to such a conclusion, but apparently it deals with original sin of sorts. Whether to stay in Iraq has nothing to do with current realities in Iraq, Iran or the larger Middle East, but with the fact that the war was a "mistake" at inception. I am sure no one agrees more than the mad mullahs in Tehran. Surreal indeed.

(H/T Instapundit)

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