Monday, January 31, 2005
Yesterday's election: As I flipped channels yesterday and watched the cable channels' coverage of the historic elections in Iraq, I was impressed by the amount of coverage devoted to the story. Many of the cable channels were running their weekday programming schedule. A time or two I worried that I had slept completely through Sunday and had awakened Monday.
I was happy to hear The Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol on Fox News' "Special Report" program address the oft-quoted canard that a Sunni boycott of the elections would somehow make them illegitimate. Kristol countered that the same people (mainly reactionary liberals) making that charge wouldn't have made a parallel argument if Afrikaaners in South Africa had boycotted the first free elections in that country.
What happened in Iraq yesterday was nothing less than a stunning success. A success for democracy. A success for freedom. And, as much as the Democrat Party would hate to admit it, a success for President Bush.
Unfortunately, that last fact has caused the Democrat Party to abandon its values -- and its sanity.
The most-quoted Democrat on Iraq is the senior senator of the state of Massachusetts, Ted Kennedy. Stuck in some sort of time warp, Kennedy continues to claim that Iraq is Vietnam redux -- ignoring the obvious differences in the two situations (e.g. we never defeated the NVA, we never occupied North Vietnam, our goal wasn't to establish a democracy). Kennedy accuses us of losing the battle for the hearts and minds of Iraqis. To whom? Certainly not Zarqawi and his nihlistic, anti-democratic terrorist followers. Even in the Sunni strongholds -- the areas of Iraq where the ex-Baathists still hold some sway -- turnout appears to have been higher than it has been for many U.S. presidential elections.
We aren't yet finished in Iraq, but what happened yesterday has forced many Democrats into the politically odious and insane position of rooting for the terrorists. The Joe Liebermans of the Democrat Party are few and far in between -- and no longer the heart and soul of that once major party.
On the Internet, postings over at the Democratic Underground Message Boards (aka DUMB) and other assorted leftist sewers are equally anti-democratic. The underlying theme appears to be that nothing good can possibly come out of a democratic Iraq -- unless the country's new leaders adopt an anti-American stance similar to that of, say, France.
Attacks on American soldiers, Iraqi policemen and Iraqi civilians will continue, but that's what terrorists do.
In the final calculation, yesterday was a very good day.
Democracy is on the march.