Col. Robert Knapp, Commanding Officer of the 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, and Spirit of America founder Jim Hake "with a small amount of the gear we provided"
"This is a remarkable story of can-do. I think it is also the story of a nation willing to do more than it has been asked by the Bush administration. It is about the need for an Iraqi homefront," writes Daniel Henninger in this morning's Opinion Journal:
The column describing Spirit of America's effort to raise $100,000 for [Iraqi] TV stations appeared in this space 14 days ago . . . Jim Hake, Spirit of America's entrepreneur founder, says they have received $1.52 million. Some 7,000 donations have come from every state, and one from . . . France.
Mr. Hake himself reports via email to all donors that "Today we delivered to Marines at Camp Pendleton, CA the equipment that will be used to equip Iraqi-owned and operated television stations in Al Anbar province." Marines will fly the equipment to Iraq tomorrow. Daniel Henninger puts it all in perspective:
The war as it is presented in the U.S. and the war as it exists in Iraq seems to occupy separate spheres of reality. The political class and media treat the war as something whose "policy" details can somehow be revisited, even rethought. At home, the war is a political event, a normal partisan phenomenon. Its metaphors are borne out of Vietnam -- quagmire, bogged down, body counts, Ted Kennedy.
Guess what? Vietnam isn't coming back. The people of this country tore the nation's fabric terribly over Vietnam. They are not going to do it again.
The grand response to the Spirit of America request says to me that the public understands that we are there in Iraq and the job now isn't to debate its value but to get the job done. Most Americans don't want to be one of the partisan bobbleheads on television. They want to be part of a genuine homefront, helping.