Sunday, October 3, 2004

Kerry's "plan" for Iraq...

Here's a letter I wrote to the editor of my local paper:

John Kerry says he has a plan for Iraq--but the truth is that when you hold his proposals up to the light you can see right through them. Let’s take them in order, as listed on his official web site:

1) “Internationalize.” Mr. Kerry has been saying for months (ever since he started losing in the polls to Howard Dean) that the war in Iraq is a “mistake,” a “diversion,” and “the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time” (a line he stole from Dean, incidentally). Now he wants us to believe that he is going to convince France and Germany to send their young men and women to fight in a war that he himself doesn’t believe is worth fighting. This despite the fact that France and Germany have stated repeatedly, even as recently as last week, that they will not send troops to Iraq under any circumstances, regardless of who is elected president.

Not only is Mr. Kerry’s promise to bring new nations to the coalition pure fantasy, it’s doubtful he could even manage to keep the existing coalition together. Remember that Mr. Kerry, in his repeated attacks on the President, has not hesitated to belittle our actual allies, referring to them as a "trumped-up, so-called coalition of the bribed, the coerced, the bought, and the extorted." These over two dozen countries—including Great Britain, Poland, Italy, and Australia—have sacrificed the lives of their young men and women, only to have John Kerry dismiss them as “window dressing.”

To literally add insult to injury, Mr. Kerry recently sent his sister to Australia to try to try to persuade the Australians to withdraw support for the war—not exactly an effort to internationalize. Last week Mr. Kerry not only failed to attend Iraqi Prime Minister Allawi’s historic address to Congress, but he afterward insulted Allawi, essentially calling him a liar. How is this man in any position to work with these nations to bring about progress in Iraq?

2) “Train Iraqis.” Here Mr. Kerry promises to train Iraqi security forces and enlist NATO allies to assist in that training. This is indeed an important goal. The only problem with the “proposal” is that this is already been done. The training of Iraqi forces has been underway for some time and NATO is already moving to assist in expediting that training. We’ve seen the direct results of this effort in the recent taking of the city of Samarra, which relied heavily on Iraqi forces.

3) “Move forward with construction.” This is another effort that has been under way for some time. It rarely makes the evening news, but we are making great strides in rebuilding the infrastructure so neglected under Saddam. We are building schools, hospitals, police stations, and firehouses. The proof of this is in Mr. Kerry’s own speeches, where he has been complaining precisely that we are doing those things in Iraq when we should be doing them at home.

4) “Help Iraqis achieve a viable government.” I can only assume that Mr. Kerry doesn’t read the newspapers, since this is exactly what is taking place. Saddam has been unseated. We transferred sovereignty to the Iraqis in July. Local elections have already been held in many areas, and preparations are being made for national elections in January.

The “experts” said none of these things would take place for years and not without the loss of tens of thousands of American lives. Yet the President, who Mr. Kerry says doesn’t have a plan, has been executing his plan, and meeting every objective ahead of schedule.

Meanwhile, what does the Kerry “plan” amount to? One-quarter fantasy, and the rest taken directly from the Bush playbook as it’s already being run. There is no doubt that Mr. Kerry talks a good game, but when you take an honest look at what he’s promising, it’s all “window dressing.”

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