In his latest speech on Iraq, John Kerry made some key points about the current administration’s policies: “When it comes to Iraq, it’s not that I would have done one thing differently, I would have done almost everything differently. Today’s terrorists have secured havens in Iraq that were not there before. And we have been forced to reach accommodation with those who have repeatedly attacked our troops. Violence has spread in Iraq. Iran has expanded its influence, and extremism has gained momentum.”
The speech made some effective points. While the RNC speakers are talking about freedom, it’s important to remember that this optional war was instigated in an effort to make us safer.
But none of that will make much of a dent on the evening news. Why? Because they will focus instead on the an issue more to their liking. The misstatement President Bush made either when he said we really couldn’t win the war on terror or when he said that yes, of course we can.
Kerry went after the President on this talking point slip-up: “I absolutely disagree. With the right policies, this is a war we can win, this is a war we must win, and this is a war we will win.”
There’s your cable news headline. And any thinking person knows that it’s nonsense. It’s putting the game of politics above critical thought.
Want to blast Bush’s flip flop? Fine. The reason W can’t decide if this war is winnable or not is because he has repeatedly oversimplified what is one of the most complex struggles in our nation’s history. Terrorism has been around for centuries. You don’t win a war on terrorism. You take the steps (military, political, economic, etc.) the reduce the acts of terrorism, reduce the effectivenesss of those that are carried out and increase the punishment on those who participate in any way with terrorism and terrorists.
I may not know much, but I do know this. John Kerry is not going to out simple George W Bush. There is plenty of room to go after this administration without getting petty or slipping in political talk that you don’t really believe. The message has to get bigger, not smaller.