October 9, 2007

The problem with Democrats (part DLXXIII)

The Times reports today that Democrats are preparing to cave on eavesdropping because "they remain nervous that they will be called soft on terrorism" (though Glenn Greenwald holds out hope). As Tim Grieve notes, it's pathetic for Dems to think that if they just do this one more thing, Republicans will finally "wake up tomorrow and agree that you're just as tough on terrorists as they claim to be." But the more important issue — one I've argued before — is that Democrats are playing defense when they should be playing offense. This is the perfect time to loudly make the case that it is George Bush and the Republicans who are fundamentally unserious about fighting terrorism.

This weekend, the Oxford Research Group released a report showing that "the war on terror is failing and instead fuelling an increase in support for extremist Islamist movements." Even if Bush administration policies were reversed immediately, said the author, it will take "at least 10 years to make up for the mistakes made since 9/11." And today the Washington Post reports that the administration burned a valuable intelligence source for a short-term public relations boost. Imagine what the wingnuts would do with that information if the culprit was a Democrat or "the liberal media." Remember the traction they got out of the bogus Bin Laden satellite phone leak? Even if that story had been real, it wouldn't have been as bad as this one. So where is the assault on the administration for being soft on terrorism?

Posted by Daniel Radosh

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