Mar 23, 2018

A Blind President, Deaf Democrats

Published Jan 10, 2007, 12:00pm

A Blind President, Deaf Democrats

President Bush's call for 20,000 more troops to continue the tragic misadventure in Iraq, reveals a myopia not seen in the White House since President Hoover failed to adequately respond to the Bonus Marchers and the Great Depression. Despite the overwhelming evidence and testimony that the American military presence/occupation only exacerbates the Bush made crisis in Iraq while threatening the fragile stability in the Middle East where one civil war already rages (Iraq) and two others (in The Palestinian Authority and Afghanistan) threaten to explode, the President is either pursuing an illusory and impossible military victory or buying enough time to push the blame for the Iraqi failure onto the next administration while he contemplates military action against Iran.

And even more disappointing and disheartening is the tepid Democratic response. Senator Joe Biden, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has suggested that cutting funding for the war was "micromanaging" and "unconstitutional", while Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid first supported the 20,000 troop surge and then quickly reversed himself and incredibly, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that while she is against the "surge", she also opposes cutting off funding for the war while favoring an increase in the size of the Army (30,000) and Marines (20,000). And finally, Senator Kennedy will only offer legislation that requires the President to secure new Congressional authority before being given the funds to send additional troops while remaining silent on withdrawing the 140,000 soldiers currently on the ground. Hardly a profile in courage! As for the current and prospective democratic presidential candidates, they are all taking cover behind the new Democratic Congress and its leadership. In other words, the Democrats, despite their posturing, seem to be on the verge of endorsing more of an unwinnable, unending, costly and murderous war before any serious action is taken.

The war was a terrible mistake that can have no positive outcome in the short or long run. But an immediate and orderly withdrawal of American troops can save the lives of scores of our soldiers and thousands of Iraqi citizens while putting America on the long and winding road to restoring its reputation and influence while protecting its vital interests.

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"We are not permitted to choose the frame of our destiny, but what we put into it is ours."

*Dag Hammarskiold

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