Covering Bush's Address at Annapolis
President Bush's speech at the Naval Academy warrants more understanding than it's received by the media (old and older). It strikes me that no matter what the President said, unless he declared a withdrawal timeline, his critics would have offered the same negative reviews.
Instead of wielding to critics and polls, the President chose to provide leadership and encouragement for those who are preparing to defend our nation. The plan he outlined is not flawed in its ambiguity with regard to a departure date - it is a testament to the reality of war and war planning. We plan to win. We'll stay and fight until we've secured Iraq for Iraqi's and for our own future security.
One of the worst reviews of the speech challenges Bush's statements as optimisitic at every turn. Matt Kelley, Steven Komarow and Jim Drinkard, writing for USA Today, note that Bush doesn't mention that Sunni's could be joining the Iraqi security forces to infiltrate the security forces - citing Larry Diamond, an expert on Iraq at Stanford. They also note that the President didn't point out that the jihadists came to Iraq after the fall of Saddam. Yet they don't note that the jihadist came to Iraq because the Taliban in Afghanistan was defeated and al-Qaeda on the run. Nor do they mention that from Iraq jihadist aren't gaining territory or defeating our forces.
Reporters and columnists are aware that it's quite easy to find a critic of any and every notion the President puts forth. Should they instead choose to, it would be just as easy for them to detail the progress of our efforts and the monstrous nature of those opposing the US led War on Terror.