President George Bush outlined “Operation Iraqi Freedom” this week: “The United Nations Security Council has not lived up to its responsibilities, so we will rise to ours. … We choose to meet that threat now, where it arises, before it can appear suddenly in our skies and cities. … Terrorists and terror states do not reveal these threats with fair notice, in formal declarations, and responding to such enemies only after they have struck first is not self-defense, it is suicide.”
President Bush continued: “Our nation enters this conflict reluctantly – yet, our purpose is sure. The people of the United States and our friends and allies will not live at the mercy of an outlaw regime that threatens the peace with weapons of mass murder. We will meet that threat now, with our Army, Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard and Marines, so that we do not have to meet it later with armies of fire fighters and police and doctors on the streets of our cities. … My fellow citizens, the dangers to our country and the world will be overcome. We will pass through this time of peril and carry on the work of peace. We will defend our freedom. We will bring freedom to others and we will prevail. May God bless our country and all who defend her.”
It may be called “Operation Iraqi Freedom,” but Iraq is but one front (albeit major) among many in the ongoing campaign to liberate the U.S. from the WMD threat posed by Jihadi surrogates – like the al-Qa'ida terrorist cells slumbering in U.S. urban centers. And, despite early campaign success and light resistance, President Bush and his commanders know the current Iraqi campaign is a perilous minefield that could cost many more American lives. The endless “live-exclusive” blurry dust scenes broadcast by the 24-hour news networks tend to obscure the extreme dangers that lie ahead in this campaign.
For his part, Saddam told his commanders this week, “When the enemy starts a large-scale battle, he must realize that the battle between us will be open wherever there is sky, land and water in the entire world.” In other words, the link between Saddam Hussein and global terrorism has come from Saddam’s own tongue.
On the Iraqi front, after selected targets were obliterated Wednesday night, every media outlet heralded, Thursday, “The first attack in our campaign to liberate the Iraqi people has been launched.” NO! The talkingheads just don’t get it – they have co-opted the UN’s position. The first attack in our war with Iraq occurred at 0238 Riyadh time, January 17 – 1991 – in answer to Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait five months earlier.
Saddam signed a binding agreement of surrender as a precondition to the cessation of Gulf War hostilities – the subsequent numerous violations of which are, in effect, grounds to resume the military campaign against Iraq. (Somebody memo Kofi Annan on this one!) A decade of Clintonian “diplomacy” (including bimbo bombings) and a plethora of UN resolution violations later, it is high time we finished the job – now that Saddam has had time to become the primary WMD outfitter for Jihadistan.
That’s right, the “rush to war,” as the Left calls it, has taken more than 12 years.
All the 24-hour news cycle “shock and awe” chatter and graphics notwithstanding, there were some fireworks Wednesday night when the sky filled with guided munitions raining down on a bunker hideout and four other sites where the Butcher of Baghdad and some of his chief henchmen were thought to be cowering. In February of 2002, when Colin Powell confirmed that our objective in Iraq was “regime change,” The Federalist added the notation, “(read ‘kill Saddam’).” Wednesday night’s attacks and those that followed Thursday night made that objective abundantly clear – and by extension, of course, little Odai and Qusai Hussein are also on the short list of “regime change” targets.
As for the bomb-damage assessment, there was no word on which one of Saddam’s minions drew the short straw to go out for doughnuts and coffee this morning, but nothing crawled out of any of the smoldering Baghdad craters! “Saddam” made an appearance to prove he survived the attacks, but it was not “live” and, we suspect not Saddam.
The “decapitation strikes” targeting Saddam and his key military leaders (“heads up, heads off” we call it) are a key part of our strategy to prevent Saddam from ordering WMD assaults on allied troops. The Iraqi military will be much less likely to use WMD if Saddam and his sons are not around to pull that trigger. The strikes have also made Saddam a very undesirable bunker-mate, and many of his Republican Guard officers have signaled surrender as U.S. ground forces are advancing on three fronts.
“Things are going very well,” said Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld. “The days of Saddam Hussein are numbered.” But if we missed this tyrant coward in the first round, a reminder about Saddam’s bunker dwellings…. Last September, in his then-classified National Security Presidential Directive 17 (HSPD 4), President Bush issued this mandate: “The United States will continue to make clear that it reserves the right to respond with overwhelming force – potentially including nuclear weapons – to the use of …[WMD] against the United States, our forces abroad, and friends and allies.”
We are quite certain that Saddam understood “nuclear weapons” to include the use of very-low-yield nuclear-warhead bunker augers in combination with conventional bunker-busters, which can cause a really bad day for even the deepest bunker dwellers.
In other words, if Saddam uses any of the WMD he does (not) possess (according to their French allies) he is toast. And speaking of French allies, their ambassador to the U.S., Jean-David Levitte, now claims, “If Saddam Hussein were to use chemical and biological weapons, this would change the situation completely and immediately for the French government.” (We suppose this was a veiled offer of assistance?) No thanks – the war with Jihadistan is a “cheese-eating surrender monkey-free zone.” And besides, how could Saddam use WMD that he does not have? (Just what was in that aerosol he used in 1998 to exterminate thousands of Kurdish men, women and children in Halabja?)
And from absurd French offers to ridiculous French assertions – Jacques Chirac had this to say: “I’m sure that as a leader [Saddam] loves his people.” Isn’t that special! But no remark this week was more stupefying than that of the UN’s chief weapons inspector Hans Blix, who informed MTV’s teenyboppers, “I am more concerned about Global Warming than any major military conflict.” Obviously, he inhaled!
Meanwhile, across the border and into Iraq from the north, south and east, there are about 250,000 American “human shields” – our U.S. armed forces who are defending our liberty and our national security on orders from their Commander-in-Chief to confront the enemy. And with them go 50,000 Brits and other allied troops. Astoundingly, this has not deterred Leftist opportunists from politicizing this action in a naked attempt to convene their base of disaffected adolescents of all ages, many of whom are converging on Washington and several Leftcoast cities this weekend.
Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle protested: “I’m saddened, saddened that this president failed so miserably at diplomacy that we’re now forced to war. Saddened that we have to give up one life because this president couldn’t create the kind of diplomatic effort that was so critical for our country.” Robert Byrd (once called the “conscience of the Senate”) bemoaned, “No more is the image of America one of strong, yet benevolent peacekeeper. Around the globe, our friends mistrust us, our word is disputed, our intentions are questioned.”
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist called Daschle’s remarks “deeply disappointing” and “counterproductive.” House Speaker Dennis Hastert concluded, “Those comments may not undermine the president as he leads us into war, and they may not give comfort to our adversaries, but they come mighty close.” Less diplomatic but more appropriate, House Majority Leader Tom DeLay said to Daschle, “Fermez la bouche, Monsieur Daschle!” (French for “Shut your mouth!”). For its part, the White House scarcely responded to Daschle’s remarks, abiding by the Bush doctrine, “Don’t swap spit with a Jackass!”
Of course, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi defended Daschle: “In expressing his views, Tom Daschle is being patriotic.” (You just gotta love that one!) Memo to San Fran Nan: Fermez la bouche, Madame Pelosi!
And Prime Minister Tony Blair is also taking heat for the campaign against Iraq. Leftists in his cabinet resigned in protest, but he beat back a “no confidence” motion by a vote of 412 to 149. Addressing the House of Commons, PM Blair said, “The only persuasive power to which …[Saddam] responds is 250,000 allied troops on his doorstep.” That was met with loud protest, and, without missing a beat, Mr. Blair responded, “Ah yes, liberal democrats unified as ever in opportunism and in error.” We can now clearly discern the difference between Mr. Blair and the man once rumored to be his ideological twin – Bill Clinton. Tony Blair has principles and the courage to do what is right rather than pander to the political whims of his party.
Quote of the week…
“To all the men on women of the United States armed forces now in the Middle East, the peace of a troubled world and the hopes of an oppressed people now depend on you. That trust is well placed. The enemies you confront will come to know your skill and bravery. The people you liberate will witness the honorable and decent spirit of the American military. … My fellow citizens, the dangers to our country and the world will be overcome. We will pass through this time of peril and carry on the work of peace. We will defend out freedom. We will bring freedom to others. And we will prevail. May God bless our country and all who defend her.” –President George W. Bush
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