Iraq election reaction from dissenters: that is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points" Memo."
Elements on the far right and the far left generally deplore the U.S. action in Iraq, but the success of the election there has them on the defensive. Liberal editorial pages such as "The New York Times," "The Washington Post," and "The Los Angeles Times" all praised the election. I mean, what else could they do and retain credibility?
Even far-left bomb-throwing Web sites like moveon.org were relatively subdued. In fact, only committed leftists like Bob Herbert of "The New York Times" dared to continue the anti-Bush rhetoric just a day after the president won a major victory.
Internationally, the usual suspects, "The Toronto Sun," "The London Independent," the London "Guardian" and Al-Jazeera continue their anti- American propaganda. There is no hope for them.
On the right, the Ayn Rand Institute (search) called the election "a travesty" and said it is suicidal for Bush to treat Iraqi Freedom as the centerpiece of self-defense.
But there is no question that the Iraq election has shifted momentum away from the dissenters. And as "Talking Points" mentioned in our special report last night, people like Senator Kennedy have been hurt. I don't know if the senator can ever recover his credibility. It will be interesting to see.
Meantime, President Bush delivers the State of the Union (search) address on Wednesday. And he would be foolish to gloat. Caution continues to be the right tone regarding Iraq. It remains a very dangerous place where Americans are dying.
But at least their sacrifice has now been defined. The USA has won a great victory against terrorism because of brave American and coalition forces. And the Iraqi people have sent a message to the world that is a definitely hard of hearing world these days.
Freedom is the ultimate hammer against terror. And the ideologues need to wise up and realize that. The Iraqi election is a defining moment in our history. And thank God the good guys came out on top.
And that's "The Memo."
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
The celebrity magazine "Entertainment Weekly" which is usually brutal on me ran down the sales of children's books recently written by famous people.
And the winner is "The O'Reilly Factor for Kids" which has sold more copies than the other celeb-kids books including Madonna. Wow.
In fact the tally wasn't even close "The Factor for Kids" won big.
And here's why...listen to Betsy Sillars who lives in Wilmette, Ilinois:
"My 11-year-old told me he wouldn't read your book after I gave it to him for Christmas. I persisted and we read the chapter on friends together. The next day he asked me if we could read another chapter because it was kind of interesting. Now he loves the book. Thanks for looking out for kids."
By your letter, Betsy, you've looked out for them too. Thank you. And there's nothing ridiculous about this.