"The world is not a lodging-house at Brighton, which we are to leave because it is miserable. It is the fortress of our family, with the flag flying on the turret, and the more miserable it is the less we should leave it."
-G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy
This here blog is a glimpse or two or three at the condition of the 'fortress of our family' through the eyes Timothy Goddard, a Christian writer with an unhealthy interest in politics living in the Puget Sound area.
FOTW's somewhat daily analysis I'm not going to have a lot of time online at all this week, so I'm probably going to limit it to one mighty burst of analysis of that which has happened--right now I'm still trying to catch up, having gotten most of my recent information from (shudder) TV network news. If it weren't for the fact that they keep quoting General Franks as saying that things are going as expected, I'd be certain we were doomed. Luckily, the General has more sense then most, which brings me to my first point.
Things are going smoothly, all things considered. Things aren't all hunky-dory wonderful, but this is war, that's the way things go. The network news is naturally going to talk about the problems being encountered, not the successes, which is annoying. Yes, people are going to get killed, but as Lileks points out, "At Normandy ten men died every second. Up and down the coast. All the damn day long." And the fact is that most of the resistance being given is not by your average Iraqi in the street, but by soldiers breaking the rules of warfare into little tiny pieces by dressing as civilians. The resistence being encountered is no evidence that the Iraqi people have love for Saddam Hussein. This article has been pretty widely blogged, and it'd be nice if it got more play in the major media.
"Canteens, grenades, abandoned positions -- they even left the Iraqi flag in place before they retreated," said 1st Sergeant Miguel Pares, a New Yorker from Spanish Harlem and the top enlisted man in Bravo company, 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division.
"I wanted that flag so bad but we had to continue moving along.
"All the peasants were cheering us, even the soldiers. They gave us the thumbs-up, they blew us kisses. I couldn't believe all the boots that were lying on the road. The soldiers just left them there.
Marines driving deep into southern Iraq were greeted by Iraqi civilians yesterday who waved and gave the advancing force a "thumbs-up."
"That was awesome," Gunnery Sgt. Gregory Keeler said. "They were waving at us, honking their horns . . . I really felt like a liberator."
Yup, things are going well. This doesn't mean the war will be done by April, or even in April, and it's obvious that there will be immense amounts of mop-up work to do, clearing out Baath loyalists after the war is over--luckily, Bush has played it so that there will be a good amount of international help with that, though I don't think those who promised post-war help realized that there would still be fighting afterwards.
Saddam's dead and/or wounded: It's obvious now. As Ken Layne points out, the fact that he didn't mention the captured American dang near proves it.