July 27, 2010

This reaction fascinates me. You would think having a country that's no longer at war would be some kind of terrible tragedy, a major blow to our self-esteem. Oh noes, who will we be without the war?

The minions of the corporate media seem to be even more upset than the administration over the release of the Wikileaks documents, and I think I know why: They just can't bear the thought that they are no longer the gatekeepers.

WASHINGTON — The disclosure of a six-year archive of classified military documents increased pressure on President Obama to defend his military strategy as Congress prepares to deliberate financing of the Afghanistan war.

The disclosures, with their detailed account of a war faring even more poorly than two administrations had portrayed, landed at a crucial moment. Because of difficulties on the ground and mounting casualties in the war, the debate over the American presence in Afghanistan has begun earlier than expected. Inside the administration, more officials are privately questioning the policy.

"Earlier than expected"? Honey, some of us have been questioning this rotten war since Day One. And we've certainly been questioning it for the last year. You must not get out much.

In Congress, House leaders were rushing to hold a vote on a critical war-financing bill as early as Tuesday, fearing that the disclosures could stoke Democratic opposition to the measure. A Senate panel is also set to hold a hearing on Tuesday on Mr. Obama’s choice to head the military’s Central Command, Gen. James N. Mattis, who would oversee military operations in Afghanistan.

Administration officials acknowledged that the documents, released on the Internet by an organization called WikiLeaks, will make it harder for Mr. Obama as he tries to hang on to public and Congressional support until the end of the year, when he has scheduled a review of the war effort.

“We don’t know how to react,” one frustrated administration official said on Monday. “This obviously puts Congress and the public in a bad mood.”

May I make a suggestion? Do that review now. What's the point of dithering on this?

Mr. Obama is facing a tough choice: he must either figure out a way to convince Congress and the American people that his war strategy remains on track and is seeing fruit — a harder sell given that the war is lagging — or move more quickly to a far more limited American presence.

I wish I could remember where I read it, but yesterday I saw something somewhere where a blogger was trying to discuss the Wikileaks report with someone he knew who was a Hill staffer. The staffer told him he didn't want to know -- because it would be harder to defend his Member's vote if he did.

That's the game, ladies and gentlemen. Politics above truth, winning over doing the right thing.

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