Last Tuesday, Bill O'Reilly was indignant -- as were we all -- over the loss of our two soldiers who were captured and brutally murdered by terrorists in Iraq. So incensed was he that on his Tuesday show he called for stricter and stronger action against these thugs in Iraq. Etc., etc.
On Thursday, the Chicago Tribune published a guest commentary by Don Wycliff, associate vice president for news and information for the University of Notre Dame. Wycliff also teaches "media criticism" for the University, or so his bio line reads.
Wycliff took O'Reilly to task for his "intellectual dishonesty" with his reaction to our soldier's deaths, though what "dishonesty" there was in that reaction Wycliff doesn't really say. In fact, Wycliff made it fairly clear that he is unaware of what the definition of "intellectual dishonesty" is in the first place.
OK, you can love or hate Bill O'Reilly. He can be a firebrand and he definitely can push buttons. But, how is it that Wycliff is enough of a mind reader to say that O'Reilly is "dishonest" in his reaction? Like most leftists he must have one far-reaching crystal ball.
But, whether you like O'Reilly or not, Wycliff didn't just focus his commentary on the TV personality. By turns he misread one situation after another and blamed everything he figures is going wrong in Iraq as well as the deaths of those two soldiers, on Bush, Republicans, and Paul Wolfowitz and Don Rumsfeld.
Naturally, there was no mention of the people who actually did the deed. Curiously, Wycliff also said that this is all happening because we "smashed" Saddam's military.
"Don't you understand that to declare martial law, you have to have a functioning military? ... And that the reason it (Iraq) doesn't have a functioning military is because we smashed it because Saddam Hussein ... Well, let's not go there."
No, let's DO go there, Mr. Wycliff? What the heck are you talking about? Are you proposing that we should have invaded Iraq but left Saddam's military intact? If there were any sense whatsoever in that bit of doggerel I wish someone would point it out for me.
But, apparently, military analysis isn't professor Wycliff's strong suit.
He also absolved the obstructionism and opposition of the New York Times by the oddest of conventions.
"The New York Times, which also came in for some of Bill's dishonorable mention, has not endorsed the winner in the last two presidential elections."
I see. So, all one needs for absolution for being on the wrong side of history is to have backed the wrong presidential candidate? We can be as shrill and anti-American as we like as long as our candidate didn't happen to win the White House?
Again, logic seems to escape Mr. Wycliff.
Also, the good professor posits that leftist opposition to the war hasn’t hamstrung Bush because his Party "controls both houses of Congress".
Unfortunately for the professor's analysis, though, the GOP has yet to achieve a total lock on power in Congress. They do have a good control of the House, but their control of the Senate is still tenuous and doesn't approach anything near what, say, FDR had during his war years.
Politics obviously isn't Wycliff's strong suit.
Wycliff then blames both Don Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz for these two soldiers' murders because, as he puts it, "they had some notions about smaller, lighter, quicker forces that ... well, let's not go there".
Apparently he doesn't want to "go there" because he doesn't know a thing about what "there" is. It is true that Rumsfeld has jealously, and probably too much so, guarded his notion of a smaller, lighter, more maneuverable military force. It is true that many -- but not all -- have lamented that our post invasion force was too small. But, the initial force that Rumsfeld organized and pushed for was responsible for the fastest, cleanest, least bloody invasion of such magnitude in the history of the world. Wycliff doesn't seem to understand that at all, or is too interested in forgetting it.
Further, his hazy notion about the lack of an Iraqi Army build up is woefully misinformed. The Iraqi military (as well as police) is fast becoming a strong, professional force and is beginning to take over for US forces as we speak. It will take some more time, of course, but it is happening to a great degree. It just takes time to do this.
Apparently, current events are not Wycliff's strong suit.
Now, if we had left Saddam's Ba'athist Party members in their places in the military, we would have been on shaky moral grounds when asking the Iraqi people to place themselves under the authority of the same officers that had only months before been rounding them up and taking them off to Saddam's torture chambers. We had little choice but to remove them and start from scratch.
But, apparently morals isn't professor Wycliff's strong suit, either?
His commentary is so childish, so filled with taunts, so lowbrow that one wonders if he treats students he disagrees with in such a fashion? For the sake of the kiddies, let's hope not. On that subject he ends his little harangue with the following:
"It's OK, Bill. Nobody who cares about the truth takes you seriously."
Apparently, civility isn't Wycliff's strong suit.
In fact, it is hard to determine what his strong suit IS?
Yes, I'd say that professor Don Wycliff is just another anti-American, left wing, self-loathing, ivory tower elitist who ... well, let's not go there.