Editorial "Murtha is Assailed For Daring to Speak Out"
U.S. Rep. John Murtha (D., Pa.), a decorated war veteran, is taking obscene criticism from the right for daring to point out that the Bush administration has given our troops an all-but-impossible job in Iraq.Did this guy ever think about moving to France?
The 17-term congressman had already inflamed the Swift Boat crowd last year by calling for a rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces.Read: Surrender to terrorism.
Don't you love how they chose the word "lamenting"--poor widdle Johnny Murtha--bless his heart!
The fallout reached a ridiculous low point last fall when a Republican congresswoman who'd never been within several time zones of a battlefield called Murtha, winner of two Purple Hearts, a coward on the House floor.
Now, incredibly, the partisan rhetoric is even more vile. Murtha is being called a traitor and a "fifth columnist" because he responded to reports of a possible massacre in Haditha, Iraq, by lamenting that Marines shot Iraqi civilians "in cold blood."
"I will not excuse murder, and this is what happened," Murtha said. (note: no Clintonian parsing of the word "is")
To make matters worse, in his rush to increase his stack of "chits", Murtha has poisoned the waters of public opinion and has all but guaranteed that an impartial jury cannot be found should charges ensue (it is my guess that they won't).
Even worse yet, Murtha's rush to judgment before the facts have been garnered has also given our enemies another propaganda tool from which they can increase recruitment. Murtha could not have done better for the enemy if he was standing in front of the Al Qaeda recruitment center itself and handing out $50,000 sign-up bonuses.
But of course, to the Philadelphia Enquirer, Murtha was merely lamenting.
The descriptions of what happened in Haditha on Nov. 19, 2005, are among the ugliest to come out of the war. The Marines said initially that civilians were killed in crossfire with insurgents after a bomb killed a Marine. A military probe since then has amassed evidence that Marines may have deliberately shot and killed 24 civilians, including children, in a house-to-house search, and that attempts were made to cover up the incident.
Second, note how if a casual reader reads that paragraph and misses that three letter word in the middle of it, that the Philadelphia Enqirer itself runs the risk that the reader will presume guilt (not that they care). Even Time Magazine, whose original article brought this