I suppose we could just thank our lucky stars that all the negative prognostications were all wet and leave it at that. But we shouldn't. We should remind ourselves, and remind them that contrary to the predictions, there were no homeland terrorist attacks, no chemical gassings of the troops, no mass mobilization of Arab killers, no 100-percent-of-the-vote fierce support for Saddam Hussein, no quagmire of unending length, no public-opinion debacle for President Bush, no hopelessly fractured alliances. But being a journalist means never having to say you're sorry.
Too much journalism today in our 24-hour news cycle is crystal ball speculation into the future, not reporting on the present. Thus we see so many in the media already launching into critiques against the administration's allegedly haughty approach to reconstruction, using the same U.N.-promoting template from the pre-war period.
Wait two seconds. Hasn't anything changed for the better? Haven't we learned anything from the last few weeks? Isn't Free Iraq now a great place for journalists to assess what they got wrong in speculating about the war, instead of simply moving on to speculate that now the political phase is the "toughest" part? Shouldn't journalists -- along with the rest of the world -- acknowledge that the United States has removed a threat to the world that the United Nations would never dare to remove?
Maybe the "toughest" part of this war is not left to armed forces, but to those members of the news media who were too relentlessly negative to be fair. Now they should have to explain why they squeezed news events through their own prejudicial anti-war filter at the risk of threatening to undermine the war effort. There's a lot for which they should answer, but they won't.