Lost amidst the daily calls for immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq emanating from the Democratic Party is the fate of the Iraqi people and its fledgling government. While the anti-war camps claims the moral high ground, in fact, what it is demanding is not only irresponsible, but morally reprehensible.
But the interests of political maneuvering have come to outweigh those of humanity, not to mention American national security. Does anyone really suppose that our enemies have not taken notice?
This is the message from Iraq's U.N. Ambassador Feisal Amin al-Istrabadi, according to an interview with the New York Post
Iraq's U.N. ambassador has a stark message for the American people: Don't abandon us now.
"We have to know we have a partner here, that we have a partner we can rely on," Ambassador Feisal Amin al-Istrabadi told The Post in a rare interview.
"This country is at war. We are at war together. We are allied together at war against a common enemy," al-Istrabadi said. "We have one way forward: together."
Al-Istrabadi's remarks came as he warned that the debate in Washington over the course of the Iraq war is being "poll-driven" because of the 2008 elections.
It's also being closely monitored by a key enemy, he said: al Qaeda.
He also warned, "If there weren't a single American soldier" left in Iraq, al Qaeda members and other terrorists there would be "killing people, massacring them by the hundreds and thousands every month."
"It's a very real threat. It is a clear and present danger," said al-Istrabadi, who is also Iraq's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations.
Rather than a public debate that focuses on American withdrawal, al-Istrabadi said that now is the time to press ahead with the surge in U.S. troops to crush insurgent forces in Iraq.
"We've made remarkable progress, and so it seems to me that this is the time to redouble the commitment, to help us to complete that process," he said.
But instead, he noted, the early launch of the U.S. presidential campaign has turned America's war policy into a political football.
"It's been very painful to watch the political process in Washington, because it seems to have very little to do with Iraq," al-Istrabadi said.
"It seems to be poll-driven, based on internal political dynamics," he added. "It's more poll-driven than it might have been at this point in the middle of May 2004 [the last presidential-election year], in terms of the issues and how they play with voters."
"Because of this acceleration of the presidential race, I think we have less of the ability of the elder statesmen of both parties to find a reasonable compromise that is based on international interest, as opposed to what may be popular."
Al-Istrabadi's comments come as the Democratic-controlled Congress, as well as Democratic presidential candidates, including Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, have stepped up efforts to bring troops home and end the war.
Al-Istrabadi, who drafted Iraq's interim constitution and who was the principle author of its bill of rights, said he was shocked by the recent passage of Democratic-sponsored legislation to fund the war in two-month increments.
"Our mutual enemy [al Qaeda], which has a variety of funding sources available to them, is not thinking about funding only 60 days at a time," al-Istrabadi said. "It seems to me you fight fire with fire. I don't know how you fund a war 60 days at a time."
He sharply criticized proposals for a timeline to withdraw the troops, warning that such moves are "not helpful" because they send a strong message that al Qaeda only needs to wait out the United States.
"Some of the pronouncements about early withdrawal make one scratch one's head as far as trying to square that with the ultimate interests of the U.S. in the region, which have got to be predicated on stability," al-Istrabadi said.
He claimed the debate between Democrats in Congress and President Bush is being closely monitored by al Qaeda in Iraq, which al-Istrabadi described as a cunning and sophisticated enemy that is not to be underestimated.
"There are real enemies who are watching the debate, who understand what's happening here and who think they can affect the outcome of the debate," he said.
I echoed these sentiments in a March column
As the fourth anniversary of the Iraq War approaches and anti-war groups gear up to hold rallies across the country, it might behoove the movement to think about the consequences of its actions. Demanding an immediate withdrawal of troops from Iraq, pushing to remove funding from military efforts and exaggerating the problems in Afghanistan only strengthen the enemies of freedom, while creating insecurity in burgeoning democratic governments. In this way, the actions of the anti-war movement may actually end up prolonging the conflict.
Anybody listening out there?Update (5/22):
Former Nebraska senator Bob Kerrey says much the same thing to his fellow Democrats in a column
at the WSJ's
OpinionJournal.com (h/t Lew of Right in a Left World
And James Taranto, in an item titled "Unholly Alliance" (no doubt in reference to David Horowitz' eerily prescient book
of same name) in today's "Best of the Web
," notes that:
"...the donks and the mullahs--even if not, strictly speaking, allies--are working in concert to bring about an American defeat."