When You’ve Lost The Sportswriters…

2 comments May 3rd, 2007at 07:23am Posted by Eli

Mike Lupica hammers the Bushies (and the go-along-to-get-along Democrats) once again:

Here he was, coming out of the sky like the real flyboy he always wanted to be, more convinced than ever that the only way to be a great American President was to be a war President, even if the war on terror wasn’t enough and he had to start one of his very own.

(…)

Hillary Clinton nearly lost her voice in California the other day, calling Bush’s remarks on May 1, 2003, “one of the most shameful episodes in American history.” But she voted for the war and so did John Edwards and so did Sen. Christopher Dodd and so did Sen. Joe Biden. They are all experts on Iraq now, in what has become the best and most vocal and most prominent Monday morning quarterbacking in all of American political history.

They know everything now, the way Rudy Giuliani knows everything about terrorism because he was mayor when it happened to New York. It is why he tells everybody that only he, a Republican, America’s Mayor, can keep us safe from future attacks. As if he knows things that nobody else knows because he was mayor of New York the day we got hit. The only problem with this, now that Giuliani has built both his fortune and his current place in the polls on his response to the attacks of Sept.11, is that his response that day does not measure up to its legend. His command center to fight terrorism was at 7 World Trade Center and his firefighters were using the same radios to communicate with each other that hadn’t worked when the World Trade Center had first been hit in 1993.

But that really is the game these days, the amazing amount of political genius we get after the fact. We sure get it from George Tenet, the former head of the CIA who gets very brave about Iraq and the reasons for getting into it now that he has a book to sell, who wants to be a patriot after he’s left the room.

Tenet was on the inside and did nothing when it counted. Neither did Colin Powell, who came out of the Bronx to become a military hero and later secretary of state. Only when we needed Powell most to be a hero he went in front of the United Nations in February of 2003 and gave us a slide show about nothing. But people believed him, the way Democrats running for President now say they believed the intelligence they got from Bush, who they now decide has stepped over the clown line.

(…)

When it counted he did what he did in front of the UN and it was shameful. He could have stood up and did not. All the Democrats, with the exception of Barack Obama, who was in the bleachers at the time, tell us now, with great force, what they could have done and should have done about Iraq.

You know who did stand up when it counted? Sen. Edward Kennedy. He was already 40 years in the Senate and was supposed to be too old and too liberal and was supposed to be some kind of has-been, even as a Kennedy, whose dayof being a powerful voice was past. But he stood up and told the truth about Bush’s war even when nobody wanted to listen.

Kennedy had already been one of 23 senators to vote against the resolution authorizing the President to use military force against Iraq. And did not quit after that, even when the runup to war had become a locomotive. A month before Powell went to the UN, Kennedy gave a speech at the National Press Club and talked about the “wrong war at the wrong time.” He talked about how “the threat from Iraq is not imminent.” He spoke of a war that would feed a “rising tide of anti-Americanism overseas.”

Kennedy was one who wasn’t afraid to be called a bad American, or unpatriotic, the way Clinton and Edwards and the rest of them were. He stood up against this war when it wasn’t popular. They all stand up now. They’re all brave now.

Better late than never, but Lupica is right: It’s really not all that impressive or courageous to come out against the war when 60-70% of the country is against it. The truly brave are those who saw that Bush’s rationale was flimsy, and that the war would turn out terribly. Those are the people who should have the most credibility and respect today.

Entry Filed under: Bush,Democrats,Iraq,Politics,Republicans,War

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