Saturday, September 08, 2007

Dishonest Don Surber

By Cernig

I guess by now we've all become used to the extreme Right of Blogtopia (ys,ydctp) relying on their readers being lazy morons who don't bother thinking or researching for themselves.

But today Don Surber, blogger for the Charleston Dailly mail, took the proverbial biscuit with a headline "Peacenicks: stay in Iraq". Surber then writes:
A government report calls for U.S. troops to stay in Iraq until at least 2012. Does the report to be released on Sunday come from A.) the Pentagon, or B.) the U.S. Institute of Peace?

Of course the answer is B, a little-known government agency founded at the behest of the late Sen. Jennings Randolph, D-W.Va.

...There are many kinds of peace. I oppose the “rest in peace” kind advocated by many on the left.

Obviously, the experts assembled by the Peace Institute also oppose allowing Iran or al-Qaeda to take over Iraq.
The USIP were the people that ran the Iraq Study Group and the Washington Post article Surber is citing makes it clear that the new report was compiled by the advisory boards than were originally set up for the ISG.
In a report to be released Sunday, a panel of experts assembled by the U.S. Institute of Peace calls for a 50 percent reduction in U.S. forces in Iraq within three years and a total withdrawal and handover of security to the Iraqi military in five years.

"The United States faces too many challenges around the world to continue its current level of effort in Iraq, or even the deployment that was in place before the surge," the report says. " . . . It is time to chart a clearer path forward."

The panel includes many of the experts that advised the Iraq Study Group panel led by former secretary of state James A. Baker III and former Democratic congressman Lee H. Hamilton, which issued its report last December. Many of its recommendations have since been adopted, some reluctantly, by the Bush administration. The U.S. Institute of Peace ran the Baker-Hamilton report and assembled the experts.

The White House blocked the reconvening of the Baker-Hamilton panel, which was evenly divided among 10 prominent Democrats and Republicans, by urging Baker not to participate, according to U.S. officials. So USIP reconvened the experts who had advised them. The group, which met through the summer, is made up of some two dozen former U.S. officials and ambassadors, former CIA analysts, and Iraq specialists from think tanks and universities.
That means these are the folks you’re calling “peaceniks” Mr. Surber.

Folks from the Heritage Foundation (James Jay Carafano), Hudson Institute (Hillel Fradkin), AEI (Reuel Marc Gerecht), Nixon Center (Geoffrey Kemp), RAND (James F. Dobbins), the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (Clifford May) and many other major conservative think tanks as well as prominent centrist and left-leaning ones. The advisory panel is a who's-who of the major US foreign policy think tanks. The Brookings Institution (Michael E. O'Hanlon), the Center for Strategic & International Studies, the National Defense University and the Council on Foreign Relations are all likewise well represented.

And let’s not forget:
Admiral James O. Ellis, Jr. United States Navy, Retired
General John M. Keane United States Army, Retired
General Edward C. Meyer United States Army, Retired
General Joseph W. Ralston United States Air Force, Retired
Lieutenant General Roger C. Schultz, Sr. United States Army, Retired

General Keane was one of the two architects of the Surge, along with Fred Kagan.

This, Mr. Surber, is not a collection of "peaceniks". Either you knew that and tried to deceive your readers or you didn't and are too ill-informed to be listened to when you write about foreign policy.

Update I left a comment on Surber's blog post, pointing all this out to his readers. But it appears to have been moderated out of existence. Instead, Don dishonestly claims:
The lefty spin? After embracing Bill Richardson’s call for an immediate withdrawal this morning, Daily Kos and the rest embrace the call to stay another 5 years.
Notice Surber doesn't actually link to Kos so that his readers can check for themselves, but instead to blog eggregator Memeorandum's archives? That's because the Kos post he refers to is anything but embracing the call for a five year stay in Iraq. It actually says:
the USIP proposal sounds mighty appealing when compared with General Petraeus's 9- to 10-year estimate and Steven Biddle's suggested 100,000 troops for 20 years.

Not to mention the NeoCon plan to stay for at least the rest of the century.

Ah. The soft imperialism of lowered withdrawal expectations.
Maybe Surber's reading comprehension is lacking, not his integrity.

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