Wednesday, December 05, 2007

"Good News is No News", but Fallujah Holds Bicycle Race Anyway

It's a pretty good sign that things are going much better in Fallujah if they were able to hold a bike race there recently.

No news is good news, they say. Well, actually in America, when it has to do with Iraq, good news is no news. As the surge has helped to dramatically improve the lot of Iraqis all across the country, the American media has grown not-so-strangely-for-them more silent about the topic of Iraq.

Meanwhile, Fallujah feels comfortable enough--now that al Qaeda is on its heels--to hold a bike race.

December 3, 2007 -- About 150 students wearing colorful T-shirts competed in a bicycle race last week in Fallujah, an unimaginable event a year ago in what was once an al Qaeda hotbed and one of Iraq's most dangerous cities.

The city's police chief fired the starting shot to set the students from 15 intermediate and secondary schools off on the 5-kilometer race across the town, 30 miles west of Baghdad.

Scores of families lined the streets to watch the race and milled around the riders to congratulate them after the race.

"This proves that the security situation in Fallujah is very good," said Col. Faisel Ismael, head of the city's police.

"This is the beginning of good things in Fallujah."

Haitham Abdul-Razek raised his arms in the air as he crossed the finish line to win a $1,135 cash prize and a trophy.

"Bring the trophy! Bring it," some students chanted after the race, echoing a popular song among Iraqis after their national soccer team won the Asian Cup this year.

"Even though I did not win, I am happy that Fallujah's name was held up high today," said 17-year- old Marwan Khoedeiri, adding that he was not scared to compete, because of the security provided by police and army.

God bless the people of Fallujah and their fellow Iraqis. May they continue to enjoy ever increasing peace and prosperity.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Murtha (Graciously?) Admits that the Surge is Working

It was John Murtha's comments over the last couple of years that have caused a great deal of problems for the US military in Iraq. Now that he admits that the surge is working, should he demand our respect? No, but for once he is right.

John Murtha recently went to Baghdad. He had a change of opinion. He now believes the surge is working. I think we would have been better off long ago if he had kept his mouth shut, but now that he is talking, it's good that he's admitting the truth. But he's still suggesting that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan only deserve $50 billion in 2008.

Investor's Business Daily calls it Murtha's "Road to Baghdad" conversion. I wouldn't go that far.
Beyond the embarrassing questions now sure to be asked of Pelosi about Murtha's unexpected flip-flop, and Democrats' crass unreasonableness toward a people who risk their lives to exercise the voting rights we take for granted, there's something bigger for Pelosi, Reid and the Democrats running for president to think about:

Murtha, like so many other high-ranking Democrats in the House and Senate, and those seeking the White House, was "absolutely convinced" that surrender was the only answer in Iraq.
Yes, the surge is working. Deaths are way down. Attacks are way down. Success is starting to bear fruit. But I don't think Murtha's admission that the surge is working is a gracious statement. I'm still waiting to see what else is up his sleeve.