Thursday, February 03, 2005

SOTU, and more

I liked President Bush's SOTU speech, although I preferred the inauguration speech's florid inspirational messages more. The SOTU speech was more of a "nuts-and-bolts" speech, at least for the domestic portion. Bush's plan for Social Security is fundamentally sound, and one that I support, being under 30 years of age. What I do find interesting, is that Bush leaves alot of options open to use- both options that were raised by Democrats and Republicans. This essentially leaves the ball in the Democrats' court. If they want to play the obstructionist route, then they'll basically be punting on this issue, and all but leave it up to the Republicans to handle it. That will bode really badly for 2006 for the Dems. All it will tell the public is that the Dems don't want to bring any ideas forth, and have been hijacked by the far leftist fringe of the party that doesn't know how to adjust to the 21st century. If anyone, in the near future, sees a Democratic Congreessman wearing a tin-foil hat, you've been forewarned.

The other major portion of Bush's speech raised my eyebrows, in a good way. Bush wants to see Democracy and freedom spread to the greater Middle East. He singled out Saudi Arabia and Egypt for democratic reforms, and put Syria and Iran on notice. The Afghani and Iraqi elections have both had a tremendous impact upon the region, and it's putting a great deal of pressure for change on the various countries. Jordan, for one, is instituting greater voter reform. I happen to agree with the blog A Daily Briefing on Iran ( about what the President wants to do with Iran. He'll exert diplomatic and political pressure on Iran to change, and support the people of Iran's push for freedom. This will probably be where Europe and America slowly rehabilitates their relationship, but I can't help but think that Europe will try to whiff on this every chance they get. Iran knows that Europe is weak, and if Europe is given the point duty on this, the Iranians will exploit it for all it's worth.

Syria may, on the other hand, get a much more direct reckoning than Iran will. There's been an unofficial border war between American/Coalition and Syrian troops ever since the Coalition forces secured Iraq. Many of the terrorists and Ba'athists have either gone to Syria ti hide, or are using Syria as a staging ground for terror attacks into Iraq. And that doesn't even include the state of war that exists between Syria and Israel. Bush might choose to make an example of Syria to the Iranians, in a more direct fashion.

However, the Iranians and Syrians both know that they only have a short window of opportunity to do whatever damage that they can to the Coalition efforts in the Middle East. Time will tell what they intend to do, but I cannot discount that they will make the Coalition fight for every inch of support and ground that they can gain- be it diplomatically, economically, or militarily. Do not count on either of them to remain on the defensive or at least give the Coalition forces the initiative, forever. Time will tell.

Oh, I did get misty seeing the hug between Safia Taleb al-Souhail and Janet Norwood at the end of the speech. Great moment, and it truly signifies the real deeper understanding between both America and Iraq. Two truly grateful nations, proud and respectful to one another, in times of great joy and great saddness. I truly hope that the anti-war activists and fringe radicals can even try to grasp their emotional courage. And I hope they are ashamed of themselves today.

I salute you, Safia Taleb al-Souhail. I salute you, Mr. and Mrs. Norwood. You do us all proud.


Post a Comment

<< Home