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Dr. Rice says the dumbest things. She was in Brussels recently, insisting that “Terrorism can be defeated in Iraq, it will be defeated in Iraq. When it is defeated in Iraq, at the heart of the Middle East, it will be a death knell for terrorism as we know it.”

That's even more idiotic than when she insisted Iraq's new government - dominated by the same type of Islamic extremists who staged the 9/11 attack - was a good thing.

The Bush administration still doesn't understand what they're fighting. Al-Qaeda is a network; it's a movement. Al-Qaeda couldn't give a rat's ass who wins or loses in Iraq; they're not playing a ground acquisition game. The al-Qaeda movement transcends borders.

For al-Qaeda, Iraq is merely a place where it's easy for the pissed-off Muslim faithful to attack American targets. It's a recruitment pool and live-fire training ground for new terrorists. It's a great place to try out new tactics and weapons for use elsewhere in the world.

Anybody who believes President Bush when he insists, we're fighting them in Iraq so we don't have to fight them at home, is dreaming. While we've been fighting them in Iraq, al-Qaeda terrorists have been freely operating all over the world - even inside the United States. While al-Qaeda's "strike force" was decimated in Afghanistan, its financial, political, and educational wings are still free to operate wherever they desire, and its affiliate terrorist networks still operate world-wide.

Given the administration's failure to achieve its goals in Iraq (no WMD/terrorist nexus found, a government dominated by the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, no democratic domino effect, and - according to General Abizaid - a growing insurgency), about the only option left for peace with honor there is swift Iraqification.

President Bush says his plan is to train Iraqi forces ASAP so they can replace our troops. Yet, oddly, he and the Pentagon are dragging their heels getting Iraqi officers properly trained. Even Republicans are finally speaking out,

"Things aren't getting better; they're getting worse. The White House is completely disconnected from reality. It's like they're just making it up as they go along. The reality is that we're losing in Iraq." - Sen. Chuck Hagel

And even if we win in Iraq, it's by no means "a death knell for terrorism as we know it." Al-Qaeda's goal is to convince Americans that interference in the Middle East is not worth the price, and to isolate and erode international support for US counter-terrorism efforts. At every turn - from Iraq to Guantanamo - President Bush and his administration have unwittingly helped them achieve their goals. Al-Qaeda even acknowledged that when they publicly endorsed President Bush for re-election last year.

President Bush should be strengthening our international alliances against terrorism. Instead, he's nominating a contentious UN ambassador, and because of his policies, China is now viewed more favorably around the world than the United States. President Bush should be taking firm action to unite Americans in our struggle against terrorism. Instead, we're bitterly divided over Iraq, the USA PATRIOT Act, and extra-judicial detentions at Guantanamo.

As a leader, President Bush failed to rally America against the threat of terrorism. In fact, he and his political operatives cynically use terrorism as a wedge issue to divide this great nation for their political gain. That's just wrong, yet no one is being held accountable for even the most obvious idiocy.

Posted by American Pundit at June 26, 2005 2:50 AM