February 15, 2007

Democrats Talk Sense About Getting Out

Sen. Russ Feingold's statement to the press after the president's press conference yesterday:

“The President continues to deny what military and foreign policy experts, members of both parties, and the American people all know, namely that his Iraq policy has been and continues to be an enormous foreign policy and national security blunder. The President’s decision to escalate our involvement in Iraq continues his unfortunate pattern of making the wrong decisions in our global fight against terrorism. Our large military presence in Iraq is not making us any safer and it is not helping Iraqis reach the political solution they desperately need. Since the President refuses to do what is right for both Iraq and our national security, Congress must take real action. We should use the powers granted to Congress by the Constitution to end our military involvement in Iraq so we can safely redeploy our brave troops and refocus on those who attacked us on 9/11.”

And some of the hopefuls?

From a speech by Gov. Bill Richardson:

... We should give the Iraqi cabinet the opportunity to discuss the details of our departure with us and to make suggestions, but we need to establish a 2007 departure date.

... Third, the United States must lead the way on economic assistance for reconstruction. Working with the UN, the Europeans and other countries

And for our own security, we must return National Guard troops to their States, where they are needed, and redeploy troops to Afghanistan, to knock down the resurgent Taliban. ...

From a John Edwards campaign release, a plan to get out of Iraq within 2-3 Friedmans:

  • ... Block the deployment of troops that do not meet readiness standards and that have not been properly trained and equipped. American Tax dollars must be used to prepare and supply our troops, not escalate the war. It is simply wrong to send our troops into harm's way without all the training and equipment they need.

  • ... Require a complete withdrawal of combat troops in Iraq within the next 12-18 months without leaving behind any permanent U.S. military bases in Iraq.

Edwards' plan might not have as ambitious a schedule as Sen. Barack Obama's plan to leave Iraq in a little over 2 Friedmans, or Richardson's plan to be out in under 2, but it does take pains to mention that we're new deploying troops that aren't ready for combat, which should blow everyone's minds. But take it away, Sen. Obama:

... Senator Obama introduced legislation in January 2007 to offer a responsible alternative to President Bush's failed escalation policy. The legislation commences redeployment of U.S. forces no later than May 1, 2007 with the goal of removing all combat brigades from Iraq by March 31, 2008 -- a date consistent with the bipartisan Iraq Study Group's expectations. The plan allows for a limited number of U.S. troops to remain in Iraq as basic force protection, to engage in counter-terrorism and to continue the training of Iraqi security forces. ...

See, that wasn't so hard. Get out. Out. Feingold used to be a pretty lonely voice in the wilderness, but he and his fellow outcasts didn't give up. More people started speaking out little by little, and after the Lamont campaign gave superhawk Joe Lieberman a body blow, then it was wide open. Now it's perfectly normal and respectable to be against the war and in favor of getting the troops brought home.

And maybe someday, Democrats will take that lesson and apply it to a whole host of other things. Just sayin'.

Posted by natasha at February 15, 2007 12:40 AM | Iraq | Technorati links |