Brushing my teeth, heading to bed, I realized something. The President never used the word “win” when talking about Iraq.
Twice he said victory. “Let us find our resolve, and turn events toward victory” preceded “We’ll show our enemies abroad that we are united in the goal of victory.” But, the President never said we would “win” in Iraq. Victory, frankly, is a nebulous noun. In fact, many of the President’s supporters would argue that he has yet to really even clearly define what a victory will be.
“Win” on the other hand is an active American verb. We are winners. We win. But in this whole long speech of his, the President never said we would win in Iraq. Only once did he even use the word. He said, “Yet one question has surely been settled: that to win the war on terror we must take the fight to the enemy.” Everyone stood up and applauded for that, which was difficult for the Democrats because they had their fingers crossed. That statement, however, came nine paragraphs before directly engaging on the subject of Iraq.
Sure, we can tell ourselves that the President talked about the goal of victory, whatever that is. But he needs to start talking about winning not just staying the course and the nebulous “goal of victory.”
Americans don’t mesh well with victors. Americans like winners. Victors are European. Americans are winners. We win wars. We kill the enemy (though the President only used the word “kill” when talking about what the enemy wants to do to us). All in all it was a curious omission.