A STAUNCH ALLY: Tony Blair has stood by the US, and for all the right reasons. Not merely because of our countries' historical ties and close friendship, but also because he truly believes in both what we are fighting for and how we are fighting for it. He's basically a socialist -- and I wouldn't want him directing my nation's domestic policy -- but he has been dealing with the War on Terror in a brilliant and admirable manner. Read Andrew Sullivan's comments on Blair's speech to the House of Commons. Read the text of the speech itself.

I want to add that Tony Blair has risked a lot for taking this position on Iraq. Although his approval ratings are trending upwards now that troops are in action, there were times over the past few months where his political survival was not even close to a sure thing. Nevertheless, both he and President Bush have been willing to put their political careers on the line to do what they know is right, and that's more than Bill Clinton or Jimmy Carter or Jacques Chirac or Gerhard Schröder or Tom Daschle can ever say. Our soldiers, men and women who are mostly younger than me, are willing to risk their lives to do what is right and what needs to be done. How can any of the "leaders of the free world" do less?



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