Faith-Based Hate From Howard Dean

I missed this yesterday, but Myopic Zeal points out a revealing New York Daily News item about Howard Dean and his quest to lead the Democrats for the next four years. Dean rallied his supporters by engaging in his famously moderate rhetoric:

“I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for, but I admire their discipline and their organization,” the failed presidential hopeful told the crowd at the Roosevelt Hotel, where he and six other candidates spoke at the final DNC forum before the Feb. 12 vote for chairman.
But Dean said the Democrats should not change their beliefs to be “Republican lite.”
“We can talk about our faith, but we cannot change our faith,” he said, echoing themes he sounded in his presidential bid. “We need to be people of conviction.”

Oh my. Does the DNC want the Democrats to become the Party of Hate? And just what kind of faith does Howard Dean have that requires him to “hate” Republicans? I have no problem with opposition; that’s the basis of free speech and democracy, after all. But to have someone who wants to claim the leadership post of one of the two major political parties tell the nation that he hates a plurality of Americans would disqualify a Republican candidate immediately. Apparently, over at the DNC, that’s their primary prerequisite.
Dean and his followers demonstrate the illness that has infected the American Left since the 1960s. They don’t just oppose — they hate. They hate Republicans, they hate suburbia, they hate just about everything America has done. They also hate it when people point out this rather obvious fact, claiming that their critics engage in censorship and McCarthyism. However, it’s pretty damned difficult to maintain that facade when Dean gets up on a stump and says, “I hate Republicans and everything they stand for.”
Will the Democrats elect Dean chair of the DNC? Are they prepared to endorse his platform of hate? If they do, they just confirm that the party has completely lost its mind, and the leadership has consigned themselves to a generation of diminishing minorities. They may as well change the name to the Whigs, as Howard Dean and the neo-Stalinists at International ANSWER will drive them to the same fate.

Iraqi President: American Withdrawal “Nonsense”

In a slap at the Democratic leadership that has screeched about “exit strategies” after Sunday’s historic victory for democracy, the Iraqi president proclaimed talk of withdrawing American troops “nonsense” and a recipe for disaster in the region:

Iraq’s interim president said Tuesday it would be “complete nonsense” to ask U.S. and other foreign troops to leave Iraq at this point but some of the 170,000 soldiers could be leaving Iraq by the end of the year.
Ghazi al-Yawer, who had been a strong critic of some aspects of the U.S. military operation in Iraq, said foreign troops should leave only after Iraq’s security forces are built up, the security situation has improved and some pockets of terrorists are eliminated.
“It’s only complete nonsense to ask the troops to leave in this chaos and this vacuum of power,” al-Yawer told reporters.

Perhaps Democrats like Ted Kennedy, Harry Reid, Mark Dayton, and Lynn Woolsey, who took the opportunity to rail about the bad effect American servicemen and servicewomen had on the situation in Iraq, should have talked to the leaders their before opining on the situation. The Iraqis don’t like having to rely on foreign troops for their security, it is true, but they also recognize the necessity of it for the short run. Al-Yawer and other politicians also resist the notion of a timetable for an American retreat that will tell terrorists how long to hold out.
Actually, al-Yawer has sharply criticized the American presence in the past, far more than prime minister Ayad Allawi has been willing to do, which makes this statement of common sense somewhat surprising. Al-Yawer even referred to this in his statement, when he spoke of the mistakes made by the Coalition forces in Iraq over the past two years:

He acknowledged that the U.S.-led invasion and the collapse of Saddam Hussein’s dictatorship had caused problems in the country.
“Yes, the foreign forces are part of the problem and right now we are trying to have them as part of the solution,” al-Yawer said. “Well, getting rid of Saddam is one of the best achievements that the foreign troops had done because we needed this solution.
“But then there were a few mistakes during the war. If you do not work, you don’t make mistakes. But if you work, you make mistakes. … I think all in all it was positive, the contribution of the foreign forces in Iraq,” al-Yawer said. “It was worth it.”

Statements like these from the people that know demonstrate the lack of insight from which the Democratic leadership suffers, as well as their knee-jerk reaction towards blaming America first. Some have questioned the notion that Ted Kennedy, Mark Dayton, Barbara Boxer, Lynn Woolsey, and others represent the true Democratic leadership, but I didn’t see Hillary Clinton on the TV on Sunday making the talk-show circuit. Why not? Because she’s smart enough to keep quiet with her new-found centrism; she can’t afford to alienate the International ANSWER crowd that fuels the Left by acknowledging democracy’s huge victory in Iraq. That would cripple her in the next presidential election primary cycle, even if it would boost her in the general election.
So the leaders that the Democrats choose to make these public statements certainly appear to be leading the party. Harry Reid, after all, is the Senate Minority Leader, and he released his upcoming speech calling for an American withdrawal from Iraq, couched as an “exit strategy” and a firm timetable, instead of waiting until Iraq’s security forces can handle the job on their own. Even in the words of an Iraqi leader who has criticized our presence there, the Democrats are spewing nonsense. Too bad they can’t recognize it themselves.

Sunnis: What, You Guys Were Serious?

The Washington Times reports this morning that the heavy turnout for the Iraq elections not only surprised those in the West who thought that the threat of violence would suppress the vote, but shocked the Sunnis, who counted on it:

Sunni Arabs yesterday appeared shocked by the large turnout of Shi’ites and Kurds in Sunday’s elections, with some anxiously looking for ways to bolster their representation in the new government that will emerge from them.
But many Shi’ites, triumphant after voting in high numbers in spite of terrorist threats, had a simple message for the Sunnis who stayed home: Tough luck.
Yazin al-Jabouri, a spokesman for the Sunni-led Homeland Party, said many people in Sunni parts of the country hadn’t voted because the electoral commission had not sent enough ballot boxes and forms.
“They didn’t think people were going to vote,” he said, adding that he had sent a letter to the commission urging an extension in the balloting.

The jubilant Iraqis have little patience for those former Sunni masters who profited in the oppression of the Shiites and Kurds outside the Sunni Triangle. As far as they’re concerned, the Sunnis made their choice on Election Day, and that choice was to boycott and give comfort and aid to those who tried to disrupt the elections through violence. The purple-finger brigade made their lack of sympathy clear:

“We carried our father three hours to get him to the polls,” said Muthana Jaffar al-Tamimi, 30, a grocery store clerk and art school graduate in Baghdad’s middle-class Shi’ite neighborhood of Karada.
The Sunni Arabs “could have made the process successful themselves,” he said. “They could have gotten involved, but they didn’t. We decided our destiny. They decided theirs.”
He added, “It’s their problem.”

The American diplomat who briefed the reporters told them that the Sunnis still operated under the old paradigm of negotiating at gunpoint. They want power delivered to them by violence, not votes, and they failed to understand the depth of Iraqi desire to rid the country of that kind of thinking. Now they want a seat at the table despite their huge political miscalculation.
They will likely get it, at least in some form, although they will have to wait until the next general election to get seats in the new parliament. The great task for this session will be to produce a new constitution and the new executives, both of which will need Sunni involvement for the best chance of success. Look to the elected Iraqis to do some outreach to the Sunni community — a last-chance kind of offer, probably — but tie it to better cooperation with stamping out the last of the foreign terrorists and the Saddamite holdouts. Even the Sunnis apparently see which way the wind blows in Iraq these days.