Iraq: the shots heard around the world
If you were watching, as I have, the Fox News Channel almost ten hours a day for the last two weeks, you witnessed the most stunning feat of arms in the annals of military history. No joint-service, combined-arms team in history ever moved farther, faster and killed, wounded or captured more of its enemies with such few losses as have the U.S./U.K.-led coalition forces of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
But, if your news sources are The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Washington Monthly, CNN, MSNBC, National Public Radio, ABC-TV and CBS-TV, you might get the impression that the coalition forces are pursuing a flawed war plan, do not have enough troops, are running out of food fuel and ammunition, can’t protect their supply lines and had to take a long break just to regroup.
Apparently, CNN and MSNBC went out of their way to hire some so-called military experts willing to critique our war plans and even deprecate what our troops are doing in the field. Colonels who didn’t or aren’t going to make general can be found. And, then there are retired generals seeking name recognition for their political ambitions.
But why this wide disparity in reporting? Because the left-leaning media cannot put their goal of winning the 2004 presidential election aside long enough to engage in objective war reporting or commentary. Even from up here high in the Rocky Mountains one can almost hear the grinding of East and Left Coast liberal media teeth as each new coalition victory occurs and as each new layer of the depravity of Saddam Hussein’s regime is exposed.
Meanwhile, as America’s liberal media establishment is acting like Ostriches, our overseas enemies have their heads out of the sand and are paying strict attention to the breathtaking success of Operation Iraqi Freedom
Nations which, hitherto, dismissed the destruction of the Taliban and the resurrection of Afghanistan as a fluke, now understand the United States possesses unparalleled military power. And, has a President with the will to use it.
Some will claim the handful of “dirty tricks” pulled off successfully by Saddam’s death squads will serve to incite more “dirty tricks” against us. Hello. The terrorist already know, without weapons of mass destruction, that their only effective weapon is the suicide bomber.
Until the past and current hate-schooled generations of Muslim radicals are gone, suicide bombings at the retail level will be an unfortunate fact of life. Wisely, the main focus of the Bush Administration is on the prevention of more mass murder at the September 11th wholesale level -- even if we have to go all the way to Baghdad to prevent the arming of the terrorists with weapons of mass destruction.
The missions assigned to General Tommy Franks and Central Command were many: (1) Defeat the armed forces of Iraq, (2) remove the existing dictatorial regime, (3) facilitate the flow of humanitarian relief, (4) begin the restoration of essential services, and (5) provide an environment for the establishment of representative self-government.
On top of that, General Franks faced an array of doomsday scenarios, each requiring a plan of action and special operations forces to carry out those plans:
Saddam’s missiles would rain down on Israel. Saddam would set all of Iraq’s oil wells on fire. Saddam would flood the Tigris and Euphrates Valleys by blowing all the dams. Saddam’s air force and air defense system would shoot down our aircraft. Saddam would blow all the river bridges. A massive refugee stream would clog the roads leading from Iraq.
In each case, General Franks had the plans and the forces to prevent these so-called doomsday scenarios from happening while, at the same time, carrying out all of his main missions with astonishing speed.
As the scope and breadth of the Operation Iraqi Freedom victory sinks in, watch for the media Left to shift the party line to how we cannot possibly win the peace.
William Hamilton, a nationally syndicated columnist and featured commentator for USA Today, is the co-author of The Grand Conspiracy and The Panama Conspiracy – novels about terrorist attacks on Colorado’s water supply and on the Panama Canal, respectively.
©2003. William Hamilton