bushpetraeus.jpgThat’s how the Democrats should respond to the Petraeus White House report non-report: “Who cares?”

We’ve seen three reports in the last 15 days from the intelligence community, the GAO, and now the Jones Commission, all of which agree that The Surge is not working, that Iraq is a violent, chaotic mess making no political progress. So why on earth should we listen to what the White House or its puppet general have to say? Especially when this White House has dedicated itself to politicizing every facet of federal government?

Oh wait, I forgot. There is no White House report. Again, who cares? True, Dubya is blowing off the reporting requirements of the toothless appropriations bill:

(A) The President shall submit an initial report, in classified and unclassified format, to the Congress, not later than July 15, 2007 [and another in September 15, 2007], assessing the status of each of the specific benchmarks established above, and declaring, in his judgment, whether satisfactory progress toward meeting these benchmarks is, or is not, being achieved.

But is blowing that off such a bad thing? In Dubya’s judgment, the status of Iraq is probably something like we must nuke Iran RIGHT NOW OMG. The only suspense surrounding such a report would concern the extent and brazenness of its dishonesty.

This is not to say that the Democrats should ignore Puppetraeus completely when he testifies on behalf of The Surge. There are three questions in particular I would like to hear them ask:

1) Why don’t all deaths count equally? The Surge was supposed to make Iraq safer, but Iraqi deaths have gone up – what difference does it make how they were killed?

2) Where is the political progress that was supposed to be the ultimate goal of The Surge?

3) Why should we listen to you and not the trio of reports which tell us The Surge is not working? Don’t tell us it’s because you’re “on the ground,” because “the ground” is not where The Surge’s success will be measured (See Question 2). Why should we regard you as impartial when you wrote a pro-war op-ed to help Bush six weeks before the 2004 election? Why should we regard you as credible when you declared back in June that you would report enough progress to justify extending The Surge?

Unfortunately, the question the Democrats are most likely to ask is “Can I have your autograph?”