from Ralph Peters in the New York Post

August 25, 2007 from FALLUJAH, Iraq –

Should we rob them of their victory now and enhance al Qaeda by giving them a free win? How can we even contemplate quitting now?
I’ve been sitting down with Iraqis, too – including former enemies. They don’t want us to leave. They finally cracked the code. They need us. And although they’ve got a range of their own goals (not all of them tending toward Jeffersonian democracy), they’re unified in their hatred of al Qaeda.
Yesterday I listened as an American officer sought to restrain Iraqi security forces from attacking one of al Qaeda’s last strongholds prematurely – the local rage toward al Qaeda goes deeper than any column could communicate.
If our former enemies are willing to kill our enduring enemies, why abandon them?
And it isn’t just about al Qaeda, either. This conflict’s now about keeping Iran from achieving hegemony over the Persian Gulf and its oil reserves – and preventing Tehran’s extremist policy from tearing the Middle East apart. The Maliki government sucks, but, brother, it’s still better than an Iranian proxy in Baghdad would be for our security.
Sen. Warner cares about our country and our troops. But the security of our country and the progress of our troops would both be compromised fatefully were we to announce that we’re pulling out of Iraq.

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