Wednesday, September 12, 2007

MoveOn Ad Controversy=Right-Wing Diversion



The question of the propriety of the "Petraeus or Betray Us" MoveOn.org ad is a red herring for the Republican attack machine in what seems to be these days a campaign against an enemy more dangerous to Republicans than al Qaeda - - the Democratic party.

General Petraeus is a career military man who understands what he must say on behalf of the Commander in Chief, lest he lose his career. Alas, there may be no saving his reputation in the long run. The problem is, General Petraeus' job is no easier nor clear-cut than the strategy for the Iraq war itself. Think of General Colin Powell, the good soldier and the loyal cabinet member who likely destroyed his own future political career by having willingly gone to the United Nations to complete a big sale with loose and cherry-picked data about WMD. How sorry we now know he is that he did that as he looks back today.

George W. Bush is the kind of leader who, most unfortunately, has a unique way of destroying anyone who works loyally on his behalf. The president, in the case of the Petraeus report, is the one who is betraying our trust, as he'[s done throughout his presidency.

General Petraeus is doing his tapdance for a President who would just as soon throw him to the wolves if he spoke any hard truth to that disastrous power.

U.S. Congressman James Moran said something recently about a trip to Iraq that has me concerned about General Petraeus. Read the folling statement from Rep. Moran and ask yourself how much you think you can trust a General of Petraeus' rank who's creating the illusion of a situation where we, as a nation, are precluded from being able to withdraw from Iraq in any reasonable period of time because he "doesn't know how.."

REP JIM MORAN: Now, to talk about strategy: I’m going to recommend that Mr. Murtha reject the 50 billion entirely, take the 14 billion, and use it solely for withdrawal purposes. I asked Gen. Petraeus in Iraq whether he had made plans for withdrawal, and he said "No! There are no contingency plans for withdrawal." He said: "I don’t know how to do it. It takes six months just to close down one military base, and you can’t do many simultaneously." You can check on how many military bases we have all over Iraq. So basically they’re created a situation that they think precludes any ability to withdraw from that country in any reasonable period of time. I hope that we are going to recommend that the money that the President is requesting for Iraq be used solely for withdrawing our troops, weapons, and facilities.

Democrats have refused to repudiate MoveOn.org's ad questioning General Petraeus' character and role in this decidedly bogus hyperfocus on one component of a disastrous overall policy that's failing at every other step of the way.

Jeffrey Feldman describes how even the mainstream is easily suckered into the right-wing misframing of the essence of U.S. citizens' message questioning President Bush's policy in Iraq. The right-wing wishes to silence that message and various right-wing sources have coordinated accusations that critics of the war seek to harm the country, this time by slandering the U.S. military.

This is how unjust wars are perpetuated by those who allow pumped-up controversy to throw them off course.

Meanwhile, a young man or woman will likely die today in Iraq while serving an attention-deficit nation.