Thursday, May 15, 2008

That McCain Fantasy Speech

Here's an excerpt from John McCain's fantasyland speech earlier today (the one that donpedro discusses below):

By January 2013, America has welcomed home most of the servicemen and women who have sacrificed terribly so that America might be secure in her freedom. The Iraq War has been won. Iraq is a functioning democracy, although still suffering from the lingering effects of decades of tyranny and centuries of sectarian tension. Violence still occurs, but it is spasmodic and much reduced. Civil war has been prevented; militias disbanded; the Iraqi Security Force is professional and competent; al Qaeda in Iraq has been defeated; and the Government of Iraq is capable of imposing its authority in every province of Iraq and defending the integrity of its borders. The United States maintains a military presence there, but a much smaller one, and it does not play a direct combat role.

It's hard for me to read this without doing the following imagine-if exercise.

Imagine if John McCain had been asked on March 16, 2003, what Iraq would look like in May 2008, more than five years after the start of the war for which he so eagerly pushed.

My guess is that, five years ago, if you had taken the number "2013" in the graf above and replaced it with "2008", McCain's only real problem with it would have been the view that five years was too pessimistic.

(Oh, and he wouldn't have known what "al Qaeda in Iraq" was, since it didn't exist then.)

1 comment:

John Rose said...

Even now, it's questionable whether McCain knows what the term "Al Qaeda in Iraq" means as something distinct from "militias in Iraq". When people suggest that Obama needs to pursue the Rove-ian strategy of attacking McCain on his strengths instead of his weaknesses, I feel like this gaffe McCain kept repeating is the perfect opportunity. How can McCain pretend to be the authority on keeping us safe from the terrorists when he doesn't even understand the regional Shiite vs. Sunni politics?