If there is good news from Iraq, you can rest assured it will not appear in the Los Angeles Times.
On Saturday, former Sunni insurgents ambushed Al Qaeda terrorists, killing 18. The Sunni forces actually requested that U.S. troops not interfere until the battle ended. The story was carried by the New York Daily News; and by CBS News. But not a word about the battle appeared in the Los Angeles Times.
It would be difficult indeed to dispute the newsworthiness of this story. Here in the clearest terms is evidence of the success of the anti-insurgency strategy implemented by U.S. Army General David Petraeus (photo above right). Not only were the forces fighting Al Qaeda former enemies of the U.S. troops, and now their allies, but they demonstrated the ability to take the initiative against Al Qaeda and win, without U.S. troop or air support.
Of course, that is exactly why the story did not appear in the Los Angeles Times. It is inconsistent with the perspective on the Iraq War that the Times feeds its readers. As current trends on the battlefield continue, it will become harder and harder for the Los Angeles Times to ignore that U.S. military and political goals are being achieved. However, you can rest assured that the readers of the Los Angeles Times will be the last to know.
Update, November 12, 2007: Well, shut my mouth! While still not having reported the Sunni ambush of Al Qaeda terrorists on Saturday, apparently the Los Angeles Times has concluded that it can no longer ignore the progress made by U.S. military forces in Iraq. In an editorial published today, the Times editorial writers note:
The latest statistics are in and, by every reasonable measure, the U.S. military is making commendable progress in lessening the violence in Iraq. Iraqi civilian and military deaths have plummeted in recent months, as has the number of American soldiers killed or wounded. Bombings are down, attacks on U.S. troops have plunged and the ghastly daily count of corpses bearing the signs of sectarian torture is markedly lower. While the U.S. military's data are rosier than some other tallies, all the indicators of violence are now, mercifully, pointing down. As a result, some of the 2 million Iraqi refugees who have fled their homes have begun to come back -- 46,030 of them reentered the country in October, according to the Iraqi government.
And what lesson does the Times draw from all this good news--that it's time to cut and run! "The surge has created an opportunity to leave -- and leave we must." Remember, being a Lefty means never having to say you're sorry (or were wrong).