Punditry and the Petraeus report
Predictably, opponents of the war in Iraq spoke ill of Petraeus and the report, though none worse than MoveOn.org. Meanwhile, supporters of the war cited the report to show that the surge is working, and needs to be continued.
All of this contributes nothing to the debate. It's wholly expected. I'm no journalist, but I see an obvious approach to correct this situation. In advance of the release of the Petraeus report, journalists should have interviewed prominent opponents of the war and asked the following:
"The Petraeus report is released. In the report, he concludes that the surge is a failure and America's continued presence in Iraq is a mistake. Under what circumstances would you attack Petraeus and the report?"
Then, when the report comes out, favoring the war, you hold these individuals to attacking the report only for the reasons previously cited. Anything else is demonstrated to be playing politics.
For those who support the war, you ask the similar hypothetical, discussing what would make them question the report given that it is positive.