In a recent report to Congress, the Bush administration reported that Iraq has now made satisfactory progress on 15 of 18 benchmarks. This is nearly twice the progress that was reported one year ago. If you were unaware of this, that's probably because NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN and the New York Times all completely ignored the story. That's right, none of these major news outlets felt Iraq's progress on meeting political benchmarks was worthy of reporting. But the full story can be found here.
This is no doubt bad news for Barack Obama, who is depending on US failure in Iraq to help him get to the White House. Perhaps that's why the aforementioned news agencies haven't reported on this. Obama has committed to immediate, unconditional withdrawal of US troops and it's a position that he can't reverse. So, the worse things are in Iraq the better he will look when he gives that order, which brings me to another issue.
During a debate, Obama was asked if he would still withdraw US troops EVEN if his top military advisors told him such a withdrawal would be disastrous. Obama answered yes, saying that the Commander in Chief has ultimate authority and is not bound to what his advisors say. This is where I have a problem.
Obama has no military experience. He knows nothing about military tactics or strategy. Yet, he hopes to command the greatest military force on the planet. That's fine. But it seems to me that someone in his position would listen carefully to his military advisors. After all, they know what they're talking about, he doesn't (at least when it comes to military issues). The idea that he is going to do what he wants to do - damn what his advisors say - is a bit frightening. It's just another example of Obama's arrogance, and it reflects a reckless military policy.
I for one am happy to see the Iraqi government making progress. In one year they have doubled the number of benchmarks met. We have given them freedom, then security, and it appears they are responding. Progress is slow, but we are heading in the right direction. It's my hope that America won't turn its back on the people of Iraq when they are so close to succeeding at building their democracy.
That will be up to the voters.