It will not surprise you to know I couldn't watch it. Him. Whatever. Couldn't even bring myself to listen.
So I read the advance text of the First Repeater's speech. Here are some nuggets culled from the whole:
Our enemies would have a safe haven from which to plan and launch attacks on the American people. On September the 11th, 2001, we saw what a refuge for extremists on the other side of the world could bring to the streets of our own cities. For the safety of our people, America must succeed in Iraq. (snip) Ah, crikey, he's doing the ghost of Christmas past yet again. Give it a rest, George. We remember.
These Iraqi forces will operate from local police stations - conducting patrols, setting up checkpoints, and going door-to-door to gain the trust of Baghdad residents. (snip) "Open your damn door before we kick it down and open fire. Have a good day."
I have made it clear to the Prime Minister and Iraq's other leaders that America's commitment is not open-ended. If the Iraqi government does not follow through on its promises, it will lose the support of the American people. (snip) Yeah, well . . . .
Many listening tonight will ask why this effort will succeed when previous operations to secure Baghdad did not. (snip) George, why will this effort succeed when previous operations to secure Baghdad did not?
This new strategy will not yield an immediate end to suicide bombings, assassinations, or IED attacks. (snip) Stop. Right there. "New strategy" implies that there was an old strategy. Many listening tonight are skeptical.
Our enemies in Iraq will make every effort to ensure that our television screens are filled with images of death and suffering. (snip) This is rather clever. It suggests that those who have clamored for transparency and truth in word and photos about what's really happening in Iraq are enemies of America. A broad brushstroke that paints Americans who speak truth and ask for information as subversives. I am so sick of this man.
In keeping with the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, we will increase the embedding of American advisers in Iraqi Army units - and partner a Coalition brigade with every Iraqi Army division. (snip) I confess that I have not read the ISG report in its entirety. But on the surface of things, this appears to be another clever implication, i.e., "See? We are abiding by the ISG recommendations, never mind that we're cherry-picking and editing them to suit our purposes. Sort of like signing statements, see?"
As we make these changes, we will continue to pursue al Qaeda and foreign fighters. Al Qaeda is still active in Iraq. Its home base is Anbar Province. Al Qaeda has helped make Anbar the most violent area of Iraq outside the capital. A captured al Qaeda document describes the terrorists' plan to infiltrate and seize control of the province. (snip) I am guilty of the baby/bathwater thing. I don't know if this is accurate, but because it came out of George Bush's mouth, I am enormously skeptical. Someone make me smart about this one, please.
America's men and women in uniform took away al Qaeda's safe haven in Afghanistan . . . (snip) Actually, George, we abandoned the Afghanis and turned the whole bloody mess back to the tender ministrations of the Taliban.
Succeeding in Iraq also requires defending its territorial integrity - and stabilizing the region in the face of the extremist challenge. This begins with addressing Iran and Syria. (snip) This is vintage Bushiness. Saber rattling (assuming there's such a thing as a nucular (sic) saber beyond George Lucas land). And, just in time for the upcoming State of the Union address, a new axis of evil! Bring 'em on!
I recently ordered the deployment of an additional carrier strike group to the region. We will expand intelligence sharing - and deploy Patriot air defense systems to reassure our friends and allies. Oh, I feel certain this is precisely the kind of reassurance they have been hoping for.
We will work with the governments of Turkey and Iraq to help them resolve problems along their border. (snip) One word: Mexico.
It is the decisive ideological struggle of our time. On one side are those who believe in freedom and moderation. Uh, that would be the Bush administration, right? On the other side are extremists who kill the innocent, and have declared their intention to destroy our way of life. (snip) Is there an echo in here?
Victory will not look like the ones our fathers and grandfathers achieved. There will be no surrender ceremony on the deck of a battleship. (snip) You know what I'm thinking, so let's just leave it at that.
But victory in Iraq will bring something new in the Arab world - a functioning democracy that polices its territory, upholds the rule of law, respects fundamental human liberties, and answers to its people. (snip) And the United States is a model for this, how?
And we concluded that to step back now would force a collapse of the Iraqi government, tear that country apart, and result in mass killings on an unimaginable scale. Such a scenario would result in our troops being forced to stay in Iraq even longer, and confront an enemy that is even more lethal. If we increase our support at this crucial moment, and help the Iraqis break the current cycle of violence, we can hasten the day our troops begin coming home. (snip) This is so convoluted, I can't deal with it right now. But somehow it brings to mind post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy'"i.e., after this, therefore because of this.
Acting on the good advice of Senator Joe Lieberman and other key members of Congress . . . (snip) Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!
We mourn the loss of every fallen American - and we owe it to them to build a future worthy of their sacrifice. (snip) No, George, you pay lip service to every fallen American and their families. Y'all ought to consider having a chat with Cindy Sheehan sometime soon.
Fellow citizens: The year ahead will demand more patience, sacrifice, and resolve. It can be tempting to think that America can put aside the burdens of freedom. Yet times of testing reveal the character of a Nation. And throughout our history, Americans have always defied the pessimists and seen our faith in freedom redeemed. (snip) Another shot at the majority of Americans who dare to challenge this megalomaniacal boy-child with daddy issues up the wazoo, manifested in essentially everything he says and does.
So, like, have George and God had a falling-out? He did not order the creator to bless America.
It's going to take some time to digest this monumental chunk of baloney. Every time I pause for a wee think, I can hear thousands of fingers tapping keyboards, filling blogs and newspapers and television scripts with insightful commentary about Bush's Big Speech. There's going to be a boatload of analysis.
Here's mine: Same old, same old. Dangerous. Contact your congressional representatives. If you pray, pray. More later.Posted in