9/11/2006

Batting One Thousand

President Bush is a baseball man. He has brought his love for the game to the White House with him. And today, on the 5th anniversary of 9/11, it's time to give him his due. In baseball terms--he's batting one thousand. I don't think he's done everything perfectly by a long shot. I wish he would be more willing to name our enemy, and I wish he would commit more troops and resources to Iraq and Afghanistan and do what it takes to win the war.

But it's worth noting an irrefutable fact (and one that very few of us on 9/12/01 would have believed): America has not had another terrorist attack on our shores for five full years. This is a notable achievment. It's not as if those who hate us have given up and gone away. They are still trying everything they can to bring death and destruction down upon us. But they have (so far) failed.

It's a point Bill Whittle made on the 2nd anniversary and it's worth repeating today (emphasis added): Say what you want about George W. Bush and his policies – that is of course your right. But consider this, all you defeatists and self-haters out there: it is barely possible, mathematically, to tie the President’s record for defending this country from a new terrorist horror. You cannot – not even hypothetically – improve upon it. This is a fact that is undeniable and so obvious that only a few will see it.

And at what cost? Did jackbooted storm troopers descend in the night from black helicopters to take away those voicing dissent? Or do the most vile and baseless accusations fly hither and yon, blown ever larger by a terrified and complicit media elite? Did hundreds of thousands of Muslims have their businesses torched, their families terrorized and beaten, the rest hauled off to concentration camps, or are you far safer, both physically and emotionally, as a Muslim in the US then you would be in any middle eastern country – safer and less harassed, without question – than Jews are in France today? Have we given up our liberty and lifestyle for this perfect record, or do we still go to football games and shopping malls and fly, more or less, the way we used to?

And we have been blessed with a President who for all his faults, gaffes, mistakes and compromises has nevertheless maintained the one simple, essential, necessary character trait needed to fight -- and win -- a war against ruthless enemy and the armies of useful idiots that rally to its defense: single-minded determination and an utter disregard for criticism from those who should know better. For all his many manifest failures, it is hard to imagine a politician less effected by the legions of hysterical people determined to put off this fight. In my eyes, he has not tired, he has not faltered, and he has not failed.

It remains to be said that five years of success in protecting us is no guarantee that we'll succeed tomorrow. We have to be right every time; the enemy only has to be right once. But credit where credit is due--President Bush has done the job.

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