NR Digital

The Week

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There is no God but Allah, and Imam Rauf is his slumlord.

In the Obama era, “end” is the new victory. President Obama declared the end of combat operations in an Oval Office speech in which the notion of winning hardly figured. If Obama had fine words for our troops and pledged we’d be a partner for the Iraqis in the future, the emotional emphasis of the speech was on “turning the page” so we can devote ourselves more fully to spending ourselves into the ground here at home. But we can’t truly turn the page on Iraq without risking all that we achieved — we must work to forge a long-term strategic partnership with Iraq, and it will need a U.S. troop presence beyond the deadline for a total withdrawal at the end of 2011, currently enshrined in an agreement between our governments. The war needn’t merely “end,” so long as we give Iraq the continued attention it needs to survive as a democratic ally of the United States.