Polling in World War II
Mark Blumenthal analyzes the Battle of the Bulge, recently referred to by White House spokesman, Tony Snow. Sadly the contrast between a bipartisan war and a partisan one come into sharp focus, comparing polling now and then. There are many people to blame for this, including the hard left, but the buck ultimately rests with the president. He is the commander-in-chief. In retrospect, he should have realized that a war on this scale and duration needed deep, bipartisan support. After 9/11, he probably should have brought in Democrats into his cabinet, named a Democrat defense secretary, and reached out to the majority of the opposition party that was not already beholden to Michael Moore-style idiotarianism. I also think he should have argued that all detainees in the war should be treated as formal POWs, detained until Osama bin Laden, or a successor, issued a statement of surrender, and disarmament. They may not have deserved such an honorific. But it would have said a lot about America that they should be given it. This approach would have conducted the war on a bipartisan highground, helped win over the allies, unite the public and yet still allow us to fight ferociously. Maybe this is a naive scenario - especially after the bitter division of the 2000 election. But, in some ways, that bitterness made such a strategy more important. Especially if you really believe, as I do, that this war is among the gravest the West has ever fought. The idea that it should be waged to help win mid-term Congressional elections for one party is a terribly sad and dangerous one. But I fear it is partly the truth.