And while we're engaging in some delightful banter up here, there is real fallout in the U.S. from Rep. John Murtha's (D-Pa.) call for a phased withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, including from some newspapers who got the story as wrong as some of the local wankers did.
You can read some of the subsequent editorials here, which include some that are laughably inaccurate. Consider this one from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette -- can readers spot the howling idiocies?
To be sure, Rep. Murtha's call for an immediate withdrawal from Iraq plays better as a heartfelt expression of frustration than as sound practical advice. The United States has to get out -- but the timing is important. His call for immediate action is simply what happens when the president refuses to give a timetable for withdrawal.
The United States needs to stay long enough for elections to place an Iraqi government in power. But the U.S. presence needs to end shortly thereafter. It is the only sane course.
Wow. What stellar advice. Someone should mention this idea to Rep. Murtha right away.
USA Today's contribution to the discourse is simiilarly asinine:
Murtha's call for withdrawal is as understandable as it is misguided. The nation has spent more than $200 billion pressing the war. More than 2,000 troops have died. More than 15,000 have been wounded. Murtha has visited them frequently at military hospitals and witnessed the appalling carnage. Support for the war is plummeting...
Withdrawal from Iraq now, as Murtha wants, would be a wrong and dangerous course...
So what is USA Today's advice? You'll never guess:
The best chance of salvaging an acceptable outcome is for the United States to stay long enough to see a stable government and strong Iraqi military force in place.
Genius. Sheer genius. If only Rep. Murtha were that clever and fore-sighted. Damn.
P.S. I love the thought that USA Today seems primarily concerned with salvaging an acceptable outcome "for the United States." At least they understand who's at the top of the food chain.