Among the worst of them is Sen. Kerry, who still pathetically clings to the fantasy that he can be president someday. In his latest lurch for relevance -- on "Larry King Live" -- he again accused President Bush of deceiving the American people, this time by constantly switching his rationale for attacking Iraq: from WMD, to spreading democracy, to suppressing a "hotbed of terrorism."
But it's Kerry who's doing the misleading. From the very beginning, President Bush's rationale for attacking Iraq was that under Saddam, she was our enemy in the global war on terror and a threat -- indirect and direct -- to our national security. The three reasons Kerry cites are not incompatible, but of a piece. President Bush believed Saddam was amassing WMD and acting in concert with Islamic terrorists. And, he's always had a vision that the spread of freedom and democracy in the Middle East would be a natural antidote to the proliferation of terrorism. That's not why we attacked Iraq, because we are not in the business of gratuitous nation building, but it's a potentially glorious byproduct that we shouldn't underestimate and is certainly consistent with our war aims.
No matter how incapable Kerry's Democrats are of comprehending this, 9-11 confirmed that Islamic radicals throughout the world are at war with the United States. The terrorist threat is not localized to Osama and the Taliban in Afghanistan. The Democrats' quixotic refrain that we concentrate our resources only on capturing Saddam reveals how radically they misapprehend the global scope of this war.
Saddam was begging to be removed, and President Bush neither lied nor made a mistake in removing him. But he would be making a catastrophic mistake if he acceded to the Democrats' suicidal demand that we telegraph a withdrawal date for our troops in Iraq or take other action to undermine our cause -- and the cause of the Iraqi people -- there.
While I'm sure President Bush appreciates all their unsolicited advice and carping, Democrats might be well advised to clean up their own house for a change. Instead of gloating over the president's inconsistent poll numbers, they might awaken to the sobering fact that they are the ones who have been losing elections and need help in the credibility department, especially concerning national security.
But until they demonstrate some comprehension of the global reach and gravity of this war, quit exploiting every morsel of negative news flowing from Iraq for political purposes and start supporting our cause, it's hard to envision a scenario where Americans will entrust them with safeguarding our national security.