Given the circumstances days before Gen. David Petraeus’s progress report to Congress, where House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) laid down a pre-condition that there better not be any good news, no sugar coating in his report, especially regarding recent fighting in Basra, I was pleasantly surprised to see some unanimity in the reporting of the conclusions of his appearance before Congress. With one exception, the ‘premier’ outlet for progressive news, GoLeftTV.
GoLeftTV says the story was ‘Petraeus’s admission that we are not making headway in Iraq.’ This is about 180 degrees from what I heard of the two days Petraeus spent on Capital Hill. I heard Gen. Petraeus say that much progress has been made in the last year and since his last report to Congress. Pressed for an answer as to when our troops can come home, he said that we have not turned that corner yet, we’re not at the point yet where we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The bottle of champagne is pushed to ‘the back of the refrigerator.’ But, there is every expectation that the end game is achievable if we and the Iraqi government keep at it, and every expectation it will be an utter failure if we were to leave prematurely.
To settle this dichotomy from what I saw and what Farron Cousins saw, I sought to get the left’s perspective on the Petraeus report. I did what any good liberal would do. I watched PBS’s NewsHour program Saturday night where Mark Shields and David Brooks were on the panel with Jim Lehrer discussing news of the week, including the Patreaus testimony as relates to the war in Iraq. They were honest enough to interpret the Petraeus testimony exactly the same as everyone else. Everyone else except GoLeftTV, the progressive news source. It was good to see that I had seen the same testimony as David Brooks and Mark Shields.
GoLeftTV decided instead to report that we are not making any progress in Iraq, and, Bush lied. According to Farron Cousins, Bush’s description of progress was contradictory to the message carried by Gen. Petraeus. This interpretation is patently deceptive and dishonest and proves that truth deficit disorder is not limited to the Clintons as this video will attest. The Petraeus analysis, thankfully, is the first minute and a half.