You could almost hear the editorial teeth gnashing when the Washington Post acknowledged today (Sunday) that, yes, while we were right to say things were bad, the latest figures are modestly encouraging, maybe...
"NEWS COVERAGE and debate about Iraq during the past couple of weeks have centered on the alleged abuses of private security firms like Blackwater USA. Getting such firms into a legal regime is vital, as we've said. ..."
"During the first 12 days of October the death rates of Iraqis and Americans fell still further. So far during the Muslim month of Ramadan, which began Sept. 13 and ends this weekend, 36 U.S. soldiers have been reported as killed in hostile actions. That is remarkable given that the surge has deployed more American troops in more dangerous places and that in the past al-Qaeda has staged major offensives during Ramadan. Last year, at least 97 American troops died in combat during Ramadan. Al-Qaeda tried to step up attacks this year, U.S. commanders say -- so far, with stunningly little success."
But don't fall for the good news too fast!
"The trend could change quickly and tragically, of course. Casualties have dropped in the past for a few weeks only to spike again. There are, however, plausible reasons for a decrease in violence. Sunni tribes in Anbar province that once fueled the insurgency have switched sides and declared war on al-Qaeda. The radical Shiite leader Moqtada al-Sadr ordered a cease-fire last month by his Mahdi Army. Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, the top day-to-day commander in Iraq, says al-Qaeda's sanctuaries have been reduced 60 to 70 percent by the surge."
In other words --- gnash, gnash --- we're winning!
Oh, how it must hurt to say that.
But the WaPo is also the Holy Bible of the Democrats (next to the New York Times), and in effect it is telling them all,
"Remember that Vietnam Two election campaign you were going to run against the GOP?"
Well, forget it!