A Symbolic Look at a New Way Forward in Iraq

Update: After their pre-emptive attack on the president’s speech, democrats tonight called to redeploy (cut & run) from Iraq.

Update 2: The surge has begun!
…And, you probably didn’t hear about the other surge in Iraq.

There’s a lot of symbolism going on today…
So, here are a few facts:

Fact file on the situation in Iraq. (AFP)
Disregard the silly Lancet numbers.

Here is a look at the facts from the White House on Iraq:

The President’s New Iraq Strategy Is Rooted In Six Fundamental Elements:

Let the Iraqis lead;
Help Iraqis protect the population;
Isolate extremists;
Create space for political progress;
Diversify political and economic efforts; and
Situate the strategy in a regional approach.

Iraq Could Not Be Graver – The War On Terror Cannot Be Won If We Fail In Iraq. Our enemies throughout the Middle East are trying to defeat us in Iraq. If we step back now, the problems in Iraq will become more lethal, and make our troops fight an uglier battle than we are seeing today.

More at the White House website.

From the President’s Address to the Nation tonight…
Bush explained the consequences of losing in Iraq:

“The consequences of failure are clear: Radical Islamic extremists would grow in strength and gain new recruits. They would be in a better position to topple moderate governments, create chaos in the region, and use oil revenues to fund their ambitions. Iran would be emboldened in its pursuit of nuclear weapons. Our enemies would have a safe haven from which to plan and launch attacks on the American people.”

Bush was right on with this:

“From Afghanistan to Lebanon to the Palestinian Territories, millions of ordinary people are sick of the violence, and want a future of peace and opportunity for their children. And they are looking at Iraq. They want to know: Will America withdraw and yield the future of that country to the extremists – or will we stand with the Iraqis who have made the choice for freedom?”

Best line from Bush’s speech tonight, although a bit confusing:

“Our enemies in Iraq will make every effort to ensure that our television screens are filled with images of death and suffering.”

Help me out here…
Was he talking about CNN?
Another good one from Bush:

“It can be tempting to think that America can put aside the burdens of freedom. Yet times of testing reveal the character of a Nation. And throughout our history, Americans have always defied the pessimists and seen our faith in freedom redeemed.”

I hope the democrats weren’t too upset about Bush acknowledging their efforts.
Senator “Pol Pot” Durbin is reinforcing the president’s point on TV in the democratic response to the speech.

Drudge just posted a draft of the president’s speech.

Democracy Project has a check list for the president’s speech.
Mary Katharine Ham at Michelle Malkin highlights the major points from tonight’s speech.
Hugh Hewitt has what liberal’s want.
Ace looks at this teachable moment.
Tammy Bruce has more on the “New, Friendly, Bipartisan, Democratic Congress.”
Glenn Reynolds caught that Bush is finally proposing an oil trust for the Iraqi people.
Stata-Sphere reports that the other good news is that the Mahdi Army was ordered to disband.
Austin Bay at Pajamas Media– “War is a series of catastrophes that results in a victory.”
STACLU says “Suck lemons if you must, democrats.”
Wizbang has comments from a Tony Snow conference call this afternoon.
MacsMind has the AP’s liberal spin from Jennifer Loven.
Small Town Veteran has a roundup of reaction.
TigerHawk posted his initial reaction to the speech.
AllahPundit has the video.

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