July 3, 2008 | National Review Online


I, for one, will not criticize Obama if he is moving to the right on Iraq. Iraq is the most important front in the global war being fought by our jihadist enemies. They have told us so – and they get a vote (in addition to habeas corpus rights).

If Obama now grasps that to be defeated tin Iraq – by al-Qaeda and/or Iran – would invite terrible consequences, I say bully for him. But this quibble: Obama said today that as president he would give his generals a new mission: “End this war.” What he does not seem to comprehend is that the only way they can end the war is by staying in theater long enough to defeat AQ and the Iranian-backed militias, gradually shifting responsibility for defense to Iraq’s elected government.

If we withdraw prematurely or even on an inflexible timetable, the war won’t end – it will continue, though without Americans exercising influence over its outcome. Others will assume that role.

Consider: In 1943, could you have ended WWII by pulling out of Europe and Asia? No, doing that would only have ensured that the war would go on until such time as was Germany and Japan decided to put an end to it.

BTW, I’m to be on CNN tonight about 8, attempting to put forward such ideas

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