No one can conceive of the war being over, and us having won it (which actually occurred with the capture of Saddam Hussein), because it doesn’t fit their template of ‘winning a war’, which as far as I can tell comes from the ending of the original Star Wars trilogy: big thing is exploded, the Emperor is tossed down an endless pit, and all the people cheer, because there’s now permanent peace. Unless/until that happens, you can’t “win” a war, so the war can’t be over, so it’s still going on.
“Permanent peace” exists in the graveyard, and nowhere else (nowhere else inhabited, anyway) on earth. However, if it takes someone being tossed down an endless pit to get us out of the four-decade-long War on Poverty well, that’s your textbook example of a shovel-ready project. Stimulus funds, expend!