Straight Talk Express Has Flat Tire
Frank Rich does a good job today pointing out that McCain’s Iraq problem isn’t that he said he’d be willing to stay 100 years, as long as Americans aren’t being harmed, wounded, or killed. He’s made far more troubling statements, even beyond his recent gaffes confusing Sunni Iran and Sunni al Qaeda.
- The six day Battle of Basra that ended last week got scant press here, and it belies the surge-as-success meme. And al Qaeda wasn’t the problem in Basra, it was part of the Shiite-Sunni civil war.
- What’s happened in Basra and Baghdad shows that Iraqi security forces are nowhere near ready to protect their own country.
- McCain was wrong when he told Joe Klein in January that Basra was “not a problem, just as he was in 2003 when he said the war would be brief and paid for by oil revenues.
- Mr. Straight Talk supported State Department funding for the discredited Ahmed Chalabi which proved a disaster.
- McCain was wrong when he declared Sadr’s influence was on the wane, just as he was wrong when he claimed it was Sadr who asked Maliki for a cease-fire.
- “We’re succeeding,” said McCain after his last trip to Iraq. “I don’t care what anybody says.”
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