John McCain has staked much of his campaign on the war in Iraq and the surge. He tells us every day how he was right about the surge – how the surge was the answer to all our problems in Iraq. Maybe not exactly.
Last night McCain proved his timeline about the surge is all wrong. In an interview on CBS, Katie Couric pointed out that Barack Obama says while the increase in troops helped security, a Sunni awakening and the Shiite government going after the militias before the surge were also major factors in reducing the violence.
McCain replied: "I don't know how you respond to something that is such a false depiction of what actually happened. Colonel McFarland was contacted by one of the major Sunni sheiks. Because of the surge we were able to go out and protect that sheik and others. And it began the Anbar awakening. I mean, that's just a matter of history."
Wrong again, Senator. The Sunni awakening in Anbar happened before President Bush ever announced the surge in January of 2007. In fact, the now-General Sean McFarland briefed the media in September 2006 about tribal leaders who were cooperating with Iraqi security forces against al Qaeda. Several news organizations reported on the Anbar Awakening taking place months before the surge.