The Sunday news shows made it abundantly clear that the Republicans have no interest in cleaning up the mess they have made. Instead it is going to be 9/11, 9/11, 9/11 and don't forget...9/11.
The problem with that strategy is that the more they say "9/11" the more the Republican majority in Congress and the Republican President look useless, ineffectual and in over their heads with regard to dealing with both Iraq and 9/11.
Rather than jingoistic and impotent drum beating, Americans want and deserve true moral leadership based on clear principles when it comes to Iraq and the wider "war on terror."
Jeff Feldman has pointed out that The President is basically saying, "America is better when our soldiers are in Iraq". The President gives no good reason for his assertion, it is simply the truth as he sees it. He leaves the details of his chaotic policies to low level flunkies to try and explain, and to the armed forces to try and implement.
The Democrats can show moral leadership by pushing for honesty and clarity. Democrats, like John Edwards, who have faced the truth about how we were misled into Iraq, now need to take the next step. They need to be honest about the fact that withdrawal from Iraq will be complicated, but America is not an Imperial power, and will better without soldiers in Iraq. Leadership is not about tricking people into waiving the flag, it is about creating a clear moral focus around a fundamental truth.
According to Feldman, Here is how that might sound:
"We will find a way to bringing our soldiers home, and we will continue to lead that effort as long as it takes to achieve this goal."