For several Thanksgivings past, Iraq has cast a pall. But this year, Christopher Hitchens says we have something to be thankful for there:
“…it nonetheless does begin to look as if Iraqis may in fact have started to recover command over their own destiny, and also as if America may have helped them to do so. The surge is only a part of this story. Quite obviously, if the Sunnis of Anbar Province had not of their own volition turned on the hideous forces of al-Qaida, then no amount of extra troops could have made the difference. But some combination of the two things appears to have altered the chemistry, and not just in that province, and all the reporters and soldiers I can get hold of (who include some direly skeptical people in both categories) seem agreed on one thing: The forces of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi stink in the nostrils of the Arab world, and have been-here I borrow some words of Thomas Paine-‘in point of generalship … outwitted, and in point of fortitude outdone.’ Bin Ladenism in Iraq has been dealt a stinging defeat. Surely this is something to celebrate.”
So many young men and women in uniform have made this tentative but so welcome progress possible. It’s become formulaic to say we “support the troops.” The truth is they support us by putting their lives on the line every day. Be thankful for them.