WASHINGTON, D.C. -- President George W. Bush is on the offensive this week, warning the country not to succumb to the misguided belief that the danger of terrorism has passed.
"Terrorists continue to plot and plan against our country ... and we must fight this war until our work is done," he said to members of the New Hampshire Air National Guard. Noting again that Iraq is the central front in the war on terror, he said, "There is only one decent and humane reaction to the fall of Saddam Hussein: good riddance."
The president's remarks are part of a concerted effort this week by Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice and others in the administration to rebut the professional pessimists in the news media who can't stop distorting and exaggerating the problems in Iraq. Great achievements are being made there, but unfortunately they're being ignored here at home.
Sensational reports from television news anchors, correspondents and other media are dominating the airwaves and newsprint, and painting a false picture about postwar Iraq. The Media Research Center, which records political bias in the Fourth Estate, provided some examples.
"While increasingly organized guerilla-style attacks are a top concern for American forces in Iraq, ordinary Iraqis are faced with an extraordinary surge of crime, banditry and thuggery, from carjacking and robbery to kidnapping and murder. The result is a population fearful, frustrated, angry and heavily armed," announced CBS' Dan Rather as he introduced a story by his colleague Kimberly Dozier.
Dozier went on to report, "Day or night, these are some of the most dangerous streets on Earth. Desperation drives murder and theft. Iraqis have traded fear of the despot for fear of their fellow man, and U.S. troops seem powerless to protect them."
Newsweek irresponsibly compared Defense Secretary Don Rumsfeld to "Baghdad Bob." NBC's Tom Brokaw insisted there was a "profound failure of intelligence" and that somebody in the administration should be "held accountable." New York Times reporter Richard Bernstein said President Bush is seen as "a gun-slinging cowboy knocking over international treaties and bent on controlling the world's oil, if not the entire world."
Such negative reports, Rep. Jim Marshall, D-Ga., warns, "are hurting our chances" to complete the mission in Iraq. "The falsely bleak picture" painted by the media, Marshall wrote, "weakens our national resolve, discourages Iraqi cooperation and emboldens our enemy."
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.