WASHINGTON -- Veterans Day -- the national holiday we celebrate this week -- used to be called Armistice Day. Until 1954, when President Dwight Eisenhower signed into law a bill proclaiming November 11 a day to honor veterans, Americans recognized the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month as the moment when the guns stopped firing in "The War to End All Wars."
The 1918 agreement to end the carnage of World War I was anything but an unconditional victory for the Allies over the Central Powers -- and it eventually led to a far less than perfect treaty and the creation of the fatally flawed League of Nations. But the November 11th Armistice to end the bloodletting is regarded by most historians as the only workable solution to conclude the killing that had already taken nine million lives. If events this week in Washington are any indication, it may be time for a less-than-perfect political Armistice Day.
Just days before this year's Armistice-Veterans Day holiday, it became crystal clear that Democrats in the U.S. Senate have declared war against the president of the United States. A memorandum, apparently written by a Democrat staff member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, was obtained by my Fox News colleague, Sean Hannity. The document details a political plan to use the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence to run a war room operation against President George W. Bush and his administration. The apparent goal: to unseat the president by using the committee as a tool to divide the commander in chief from the troops he leads. "We have carefully reviewed our options," and "the best approach," the memo states, is to urge investigations of the "Office of the Secretary of Defense as well as Secretary Bolton's office at the State Department."
Back in June, the committee decided to evaluate documented intelligence regarding Iraq's weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs. Its review was supposed to examine shortcomings in the U.S. intelligence community -- something both Democrats and Republicans agree are plentiful -- and to formulate, in a responsible and bipartisan way, recommendations for improvement. Assuming that this effort might lead to much-needed enhancements in our ability to collect human intelligence amid a war that has already claimed more than 3,000 American lives, such a review makes sense. Nearly all responsible politicians agree that our intelligence community desperately needs better ways of penetrating radical Islamist terror cells. Even those running for office acknowledge that we are in a war in which young Americans are dying -- a war in which the lack of good intelligence is our greatest liability.
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.