Here's some truly delicious irony: it took a British newspaper to name General David Petraeus "Person of the Year."
As NewsBusters reported earlier in December, Time magazine shunned the General for Russian President Vladimir Putin. In fact, Petraeus didn't even come in second.
I guess the Sunday Telegraph isn't constrained by Bush Derangement Syndrome like most American media as reported Monday (emphasis added, h/t NB reader birdimus):
Today, we put him in the spotlight again by naming Gen Petraeus as The Sunday Telegraph's Person of the Year, a new annual accolade to recognise outstanding individual achievement.
He has been the man behind the US troop surge over the past 10 months, the last-ditch effort to end Iraq's escalating civil war by putting an extra 28,000 American troops on the ground.
So far, it has achieved what many feared was impossible. Sectarian killings are down. Al-Qaeda is on the run. And the two million Iraqis who fled the country are slowly returning. Progress in Iraq is relative - 538 civilians died last month. But compared with the 3,000 peak of December last year, it offers at least a glimmer of hope.
There has also been great British military leadership and bravery on display this year, not least in Helmand, where British troops are now fighting a Taliban foe as fierce as anything their American counterparts encountered in Baghdad or Fallujah.
But the reason for picking Petraeus is simple. Iraq, whatever the current crises in Afghanistan and Pakistan, remains the West's biggest foreign policy challenge of this decade, and if he can halt its slide into all-out anarchy, Gen Petraeus may save more than Iraqi lives.
Wouldn't it have been nice for an American newspaper or magazine to recognize this? Or is that asking too much?
Regardless, readers are strongly encouraged to review the entire article.