With things getting much better in Iraq, voters now must decide how big an issue this will be next year. Do you pull out of there if you're winning? Naturally, when the USA was stalemated in that theater, many people said enough, it's not worth it. And the Republicans lost both the House and the Senate.
But now the surge has improved security. American casualties are down a whopping 71 percent since May. And al Qaeda and Iraq has been badly damaged. Again, do we pull out if there's a chance Iraq can become a stable anti-terror nation?
Some will say yes, get out of there. But many, perhaps most, might take a second look. And that second look might be bad for the Democrats, who generally oppose the war.
Enter the media. Last June, I told you that some TV news organizations were showing carnage in Iraq with no context. If it blew up, it made the nightly news.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL O'REILLY, HOST: Now as everybody knows, al Qaeda's strategy is to break the will of the American people to fight the jihad. Osama bin Laden has stated that in writing. So blowing things up and hopefully getting the carnage on TV is what the terrorists want.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Now I was criticized by people like "Washington Post" TV writer Howard Kurtz for saying that, but it was true. Carnage without context was the rule of the day and it helped the terrorists.
Six months later, there is far less carnage in Iraq and far less reporting about the war. Since the surge began, Iraq War stories on the nightly news programs have dropped from 178 a month to 68 in November. The stats were compiled were compiled by the conservative watchdog group Media Research Center. And you can read the report online at mrc.org.
This is proof that bad news in Iraq is promoted by American news agencies, while good news is largely ignored. But why? "Talking Points" believes that most of the American media despise President Bush and will ignore anything that puts him in a positive light. I can be wrong about that, but the evidence is overwhelming I'm not.
Also, it is my opinion that most of the media wants a Democrat elected next time around. And any good news from Iraq might not advance that cause.
There is no question that Iraq remains a troubling issue. The government there is inefficient and corruption is everywhere. We could go back in a time machine and do it again. I firmly believe we could have found a better way to remove Saddam Hussein, but honesty in reporting is vital to a free society. And we're not getting that in America. We're seeing a partisan press promoting ideology, not fairly covering the news. That is the truth and the proof is the current reporting on Iraq.
And that is "The Memo".
Pinheads and Patriots
Our pal Donald Trump recently dined in the Buffalo Club, a swanky L.A. bistro, and apparently Mr. Trump left a rather large tip to his waiter on an $82 tab. Trump gave the guy $10,000!
For his generosity to a working man, Donald Trump is a patriot.
But New York Times editor Bill Keller is not a patriot. Speaking at an event organized by the anti-American British newspaper, The Guardian, Keller trashed just about everybody, including his predecessor at the Times. You can read all about it at TimesWatch.org, the Web site. But there's no doubt Bill Keller is a pinhead.