Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Awwww Snap

Congressman Eliot Engel (D-New York) lays into Petraeus.

"Optimism is great, but reality is what we really need."

True, and I suppose I should probably applaud his restraint in phrasing it so delicately, but for once I'd like to hear a congressman just say "Bullshit. You are full of shit. Stop lying to me."

The one piece of evidence he offers in support of a continued occupation of Iraq is an absurd fact by which to bolster the case for staying there: he says that Iraqis are taking losses several times higher than our own. That's supposed to be good news? Sure, on the one hand you could interpret that as them standing up so we can stand down, but on the other, more obvious hand, it means at the very least that there's a shitload of violence going on over there. And since our mission is a stable Iraq, that would seem to suggest we're not doing a very good job. So I wouldn't bring that up if I were him. (By the way, if that statistic is at all based on reality it is only counting a select group of combat-trained Iraqis, because Iraqi citizens are undoubtedly dying at a MUCH higher rate than that.)

Like a good military man, Petraeus just wants to do his job to the best of his ability. Fortunately then, he is not really in charge; civilians are. So let's give him his new mission: bring us home.

Robert Wexler (D-FL) makes the point:

PS: Petraeus toes the party line masterfully. He is intelligent and well spoken, and carefully crafts statements that don't smack of PR-firm talking points. He seems sincere in his beliefs, or at least he is not brazenly disingenuous. I guess what I'm saying is that after Gonzo, it is an honor to be lied to by a man of Petraeus's caliber.

PPS: Veracifier is the awesome.