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ALL BUT WON

It will be some months before the news media recognize it, and a few months more before they acknowledge it, but the war in Iraq is all but won. The situation is roughly analogous to the battle of Iwo Jima, which took place 60 years ago this month. It took 35 days before the island was declared secure, but the outcome was clear after day five, with the capture of Mt. Suribachi. Proof of this was provided by Sen. Hillary Clinton. Iraq is functioning quite well, she said in a press conference in Baghdad Feb. 19. The recent rash of suicide attacks is a sign the insurgency is failing, she said. When politicians like her start flocking to Iraq to bask in the light of its success, then you know that the corner has been turned.

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THE FALLUJAH FLY-TRAP

What the liberal press won’t tell you is the astoundingly good news coming out of Iraq now. An example is a series of raids by the Iraqi police in Baghdad last week that netted at least 525 criminals. Since Saddam Hussein emptied his jails of some 70,000 hard-core criminals on the eve of the war, the Iraqi police have a long way to go to restore law and order. But the skill with which the raids were pulled off, and the courage displayed by the cops indicate they are off to a very good start. But best of all is that foreign jihadi terrorists who have come to Iraq in response to al Qaeda's call are giving up and going home.

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THE SHAMEFUL CRITICISM OF RUMSFELD

[I am so glad Jack Kelly wrote this defense of Donald Rumsfeld - and I am so disgusted at the sudden torrent of Republican criticism of him. Donald Rumsfeld is one of the most heroic figures in the world today, and America is fortunate in the extreme to have him as Secretary of Defense. The temerity of Clueless Bill Kristol of the Weekly Standard, professional jerk Senator John McCain, and Senator Trent “Vacant” Lott, calling for him to resign is squalid and shameful. Secretary Rumsfeld deserves our deepest appreciation, admiration, and support. He certainly has that from the vast majority of American soldiers in Iraq. As evidence, I am appending at the end of Jack Kelly’s column, a letter we received from First Sergeant Timmy Rikard serving in Iraq, and who was present when Rummy spoke to the troops there. Every American needs to read Sgt. Rikard’s letter and understand how the liberal media totally distorts what the troops think of their Secretary - most especially Kristol, McCain, Lott and their ilk.- JW] Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld doesn't lack for critics. But his critics soften lack sound judgment. Rumsfeld long has been a punching bag for Democrats and journalists, who wish we had not gone to war with Iraq at all. Lately they have been joined by right-wingers who want someone to blame because we haven't won yet.

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WINKING — NOT BLINKING — IN FALLUJA

Has the United States blinked in Fallujah? The Arab media, and ours, have portrayed the withdrawal of the Marines from a portion of the city and their replacement with the "Fallujah Protective Army" as a victory for the insurgents. But it isn't a good idea to get SITREPS (situation reports) from a news media that (a) knows next to nothing about military affairs, and (b) has a political interest in reporting bad news from Iraq. What's been reported as a blink is really more of a wink. There has, in fact, been no Marine withdrawal.

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Feeble Reeds

The vote on the aid package for Iraq and Afghanistan was one of the most significant foreign aid votes in history, ranking up there with the 1941 vote on Lend-Lease for Britain, and the 1948 vote on the Marshall Plan. Had Congress not approved President Roosevelt's plan to give to Britain 50 obsolete American destroyers, the Battle of the Atlantic, and with it, World War II, might well have been lost. Had Congress not approved President Truman's plan for rebuilding Europe (named after his secretary of state, George Marshall), the Cold War might well have been lost. If Congress does not approve President Bush's plan for reconstructing Iraq, the war on terror could well be lost.

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