President-elect Barack Obama isn't even in office yet and some in the punditocracy are already giving him credit for having won the war in Iraq. The New York Times' Thomas Friedman:
In the last year, though, the U.S. troop surge and the backlash from moderate Iraqi Sunnis against Al Qaeda and Iraqi Shiites against pro-Iranian extremists have brought a new measure of stability to Iraq. There is now, for the first time, a chance — still only a chance — that a reasonably stable democratizing government, though no doubt corrupt in places, can take root in the Iraqi political space.
That is the Iraq that Obama is inheriting. It is an Iraq where we have to begin drawing down our troops — because the occupation has gone on too long and because we have now committed to do so by treaty — but it is also an Iraq that has the potential to eventually tilt the Arab-Muslim world in a different direction.
I’m sure that Obama, whatever he said during the campaign, will play this smart. He has to avoid giving Iraqi leaders the feeling that Bush did — that he’ll wait forever for them to sort out their politics — while also not suggesting that he is leaving tomorrow, so they all start stockpiling weapons.
If he can pull this off, and help that decent Iraq take root, Obama and the Democrats could not only end the Iraq war but salvage something positive from it. Nothing would do more to enhance the Democratic Party’s national security credentials than that. [emphasis added]
That's how the Democrats can burnish their national security credentials? Simply by not giving up a five-touchdown lead with two minutes to go in the game? All of the sudden, the fourth-string guys who the coach is simply giving some playing time to in garbage time are the heroes?
As Bob Owens over at Confederate Yankee notes, that's not what the record should show.
House and Senate Democrats, including President Elect Barack Obama, did everything in their power to lose the Iraq War, and deserve no credit for any success.
How many times in the past two years have Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid and their cohorts attempted to defund our troops and force them into defeat? Forty times? Fifty? Frankly, I lost count somewhere in the mid-forties.
Now Friedman and his fellow defeatists on the left who long derided those of us who wanted to secure victory as "28-percenters," "warmongers" and "murderers" want to try to rewrite history. The Times and their fellow travelers long to rewrite their moral cowardice as a virtue, and give themselves a victory by declaration.
That will not be their legacy.
Read Owens' entire piece, with helpful photographic illustrations.
And remember that Friedman wants to give credit to Obama for a success in Iraq that, even after he knew it was successful, he still said he wouldn't have supported it. With perfect 20/20 hindsight, Obama would choose American defeat based on some sort of principle. And this is the man and this is the party that the media wants to give credit?