Kerry needs a new mantra

Posted: Apr 09, 2004 12:00 AM

As a man auditioning for commander in chief, John Kerry is hanging himself with his own words. I just hope enough people are listening -- and paying attention. It's stunning, actually.

John Kerry reminds me of a wind-up doll who just keeps repeating the same criticisms about President Bush's policy in Iraq over and over, regardless of how irrelevant they are to the current situation there.

Law professors used to tell us that the good students were the ones who were able to grasp the issues. "Anyone can look up the law, but not everyone can analyze a problem and see the issues."

I am reminded of the professors' admonition every time I hear Senator Kerry carping about Iraq these days. If we were not engaged in a life and death struggle with international terrorists, his statements would be "Saturday Night Live" comical. But we are, so they're annoying and scary. I mean this guy is going to be the Democratic presidential nominee!

Not that long ago, when Kerry and other Democrats had exhausted all their ammunition against President Bush's successful routing of Saddam Hussein, they began to complain ad nauseam that the president had alienated the international community by invading Iraq "unilaterally."

Well, their criticism was off base and disingenuous -- because President Bush had earnestly tried for months on end to build a larger coalition. But you can't force appeasing and corrupt nations to go to war. Besides, we did in fact have a significant coalition as it was.

But as wrongheaded as their criticisms about our alleged "unilateralism" were, at least they had arguable relevance at the time. Now they have no relevance at all, but Kerry is invoking them all over again like a hapless mynah bird placed in a new household, unaware that its utterances don't work with its adoptive family.

Kerry said the situation in Iraq is "one of the greatest failures of diplomacy and failures of judgment that I have seen in all the time that I've been in public life."

What? Can you tell me what diplomacy has to do with the murderers in Fallujah or the sadistic, maniacal hitmen of Moktada al-Sadr? Is Kerry suggesting that if we had just organized a bigger international coalition we wouldn't be facing this post-war terrorist unrest? Or is he just talking to hear his head rattle?

It's time Kerry understood that the terrorists are not into talking. Killing -- the killing of innocents -- is their game. Kerry needs a new mantra.

The current scenario -- someone please tell Senator Kerry -- is that we have deposed Saddam Hussein and entered round two. We are being attacked by terrorists and anarchists who have a vested interest in Iraqi freedom and self-rule failing, not by Iraqi citizens proper angry at our "occupation."

Yet the oblivious senator taunts, "Where are the people with the flowers, throwing them in the streets, welcoming the American liberators the way Dick Cheney said they would be?" Well, Senator, if you'd listen to what our soldiers are saying, you'd find that the overwhelming majority of Iraqis are grateful we're there. Are you implying that the terrorists killing our soldiers represent the ordinary Iraqi citizen?

Why is it, Senator Kerry, that you insist on interpreting terrorist resistance to our efforts to democratize and rebuild Iraq as a sign that we're doing something wrong, instead of evidence that we are doing something right?

And, how, Senator Kerry, can you have the audacity to say, "No matter what disagreements over how to approach the policy in Iraq -- and we have some -- we're all united as a nation in supporting our troops and ultimately in our goal of a stable Iraq."

Oh? If you were focused on showing support for our troops and helping to establish a stable Iraq, you'd say something supportive rather than sputtering irrelevancies about "multilateralism" and diplomacy to score cheap political points.

Thank God for President Bush, who has the vision to understand that this War on Terror is not just about Osama bin Laden and his Al Qaeda brigades, but an international phenomenon driven by Islamic radicals whose lifeblood is pumped from the heart of supporting terrorist states like Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

Thank God President Bush had the courage to go forward to drain that rancid swamp, though the United Nations and much of the "enlightened" European community resisted, preferring to coddle and appease the terrorists.

And thank God President Bush has the moral clarity to place the interests of this nation above his political ambitions.