the blog of DC Drinking Liberally
You’ve probably heard about John McCain’s latest unconvincing press conference from Iraq. But I think I have to give it to Lindsay Graham this time. He outfailed McCain by far, I think (video here):
Predictably, the jist of most of Graham’s remarks was that despite the terrible violence, yes, yes, he sees major improvement in the Iraqi military forces — they are more “empowered” now.
Every person I had lunch with today… said that the Iraqi military capability was better.
By this point the Iraqi forces are probably more capable fighters than they were a few years ago, sure, I’ll buy that. Whether they’re putting those skills to good use is another matter.
But Graham realized he also had to claim the security situation had somehow improved. Time for some theatrics:
So it goes back to who we’re gonna allow to define this war, the fanatics who wanna just blindly kill people or the folks who will go back to that market 4 weeks later and will bring their kids and shop and try to do business and say thank you to us. This is a great struggle and we’ve made tremendous mistakes and we’re finally getting it right. And is it too little too late?, I don’t know but I don’t think so. So yes, in my opinion things are better today than they’ve ever been since I came here 3 or 4 years ago.
PHANTO THE PHANTOM REPORTER WHO NEVER EXISTED: Senator, were things WORSE 3 or 4 years ago when there wasn’t even half as much violence as today?
GRAHAM: Well, now WAIT. 3 or 4 years ago we didn’t have any Iraqi Security Forces to speak of. We had no elections, no Iraqi government.
PHANTO: But now huge numbers of Iraqis are dying who weren’t dying then. How is that progress?
GRAHAM [wide Lindsey Graham smile]: Phanto, you’re ignoring the issue of infrastructure. We’ve built so much more infrastructure now, schools, markets — we’ve got a new Iraqi oil law- PHANTO: But, Senator, my question-
GRAHAM [wider Lindsey Graham smile, finger in the air]: THINGS — ARE — BETTER. I am a SENATOR. That’s what I’ve seen. [pause] OK, thank you…
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