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HISTORICAL QUOTE OF THE WEEK - "Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other." ABRAHAM LINCOLN

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

IRAQ - HAVE DEMOCRATS BEEN BOXED IN A CORNER ?

Have the Democrats boxed themselves in a corner over Iraq ? In a few weeks Democrats will become the majority on Capitol Hill. Iraq has moved back to the forefront in the news with the increase in sectarian violence and the trip by President Bush to meet with Iraq's leader in Jordan in order to address the situation. This combined with the anticipated report by the Baker Commission has put Iraq back in the headlines and this time with more than the usual media body count. A re-evaluation of US policy concerning Iraq is also taking place and as Democrats approach the day when they take over as majority, they have been unusually quiet over Iraq. During the campaign they made it painfully obvious that pulling out of Iraq quickly was a priority in their agenda. Immediately after the election this began to fade slowly from pulling out within six months to a fazed pull out to a wait and see attitude after the Baker report and the confirmation of the new Defense Secretary. It was widely reported that the election was a referendum on Iraq and that the Democrats had a mandate by the voters to push their Iraq policy of a quick pull out. Now the Dems seem to be backing away from this idea as the time for the new Congress draws closer.

Personally I believe that as the reality of the election results which were a backlash toward the GOP and not a mandate for the Democrats began to sink in, the Dems realized that though our presence in Iraq is not very popular the majority of the country does not want a quick pull out because Americans as a whole understand what is at stake if we were to just leave. As Dems began polling and finding the true opinion of Americans on Iraq they began redefining their position. This is how they find themselves in a dilemma and backed into a corner. While the majority of voters voted against the GOP and hold the above stated position on Iraq, voters on the left and the hard core Democrat supporters did vote because of Iraq and the campaign promises of a quick pull out and expect the new leadership to follow through on that promise. The pressure from the liberal core of the party will be enormous. The media pressure also will weigh in heavy against this redefinition of policy by Democrats as evidenced by NBC news stating yesterday that they would refer to Iraq now as a civil war and no longer as sectarian violence which is believed by many as a move to change public opinion toward US pull out in much the same way that Walter Cronkite's announcement that we were losing the war in Vietnam changed public opinion toward that war. There has also been a marked voice in the media of lowered expectations toward Iraq policy by Democrats which looks like an attempt to get them off the hook for their all or nothing campaign promises of immediate pull out. Shortly after the election former South Dakota and 1972 Democrat Presidential candidate George McGovern was brought in as an advisor on Iraq policy. He stated at the time that if Democrats did not push for a pull out of Iraq by June of 07 they would not, "be in the majority very long." Democrats now find themselves in a very precarious situation as it pertains to Iraq. Do they satisfy the majority of the American people and work with the President to seek a solution to Iraq while keeping US troops in the theatre to help stem the violence or do they bow to the core of their party and media pressure and push for a quick pull out ? Do they work in their leadership position to find the best solution for the good of the country and our interests in the region or do they fulfill their campaign promises and satisfy their voting blocks and liberal supporters and cut and run? The first 100 days should be very interesting!!

Ken Taylor

13 Comments:

Anonymous mudkitty said...

Americans have been boxed into a corner, thanks to Bush's folly.

10:48 PM, November 28, 2006  
Blogger Rob said...

Ken, the President is the Commander-in-Chief and is fully responsible for prosecuting the war in Iraq. It doesn't make much sense to assume that the Dems have to solve Iraq right now given that we are still a month and a half away from Dems controlling Congress. That is a political lifetime away.

Using the term "cut an run" was a campaign slogan that was roundly rejected by the voters who want to end our involvement in Iraq. We'll see what the conditions are when the Dems take control, but given the election results and the worsening conditions in Iraq, it is safe to assume that both Dems and Republicans both recognize how much of a disaster Iraq has become. There is no way to "win" in Iraq. The real question now is how and when we are going to extract ourselves from Iraq.

11:31 PM, November 28, 2006  
Anonymous mudkitty said...

There's really no "Iraq" left. Welcome to greater Iran...thank you Bush. NOT.

9:04 AM, November 29, 2006  
Blogger Gayle said...

Good morning, Ken. It looks like I'm the only one here so far who agrees with you, although I do agree with Rob who says that Bush is responsible for prosecuting the war in Iraq. He's determined to "stay-the-course", and I think he will do so regardless of the Dems. The fact remains if our troops were actually allowed to fight this war this conflict over Iraq would have been finished by now. It is the political correctness of the Dems and the far left loonies, and especialy the MSM, that has hindered our efforts in Iraq all along! I think there has to be a new strategy implemented, but "cut-and-run" isn't it. That would be the worst thing we could do!

10:21 AM, November 29, 2006  
Blogger The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

Mudkitty, if a , "greater Iran, " comes about it is not because of Iraq, or Bush but because of a continual deception of the world by the Iranian theocracy and the assistance of their main ally, Russia in arming a nuclear Iran.

Rob, my point was that the Dems have cornered themselves because of the continual conflicting policy on Iraq and their backing away from the qucik pull out that they promised their base before and during the election. They do not have the power to, "solve, " Iraq alone because as you stated Bush is CIC and will not go along with a pull out and they also have only a slim majority in the Senate which will counter any House attempt if it comes. The only capability they have is possibly defunding the troops and I don't think they would commit that type of political suicide.

Agreed Gayle. There needs to be a re-evaluation of policy but that is what always happens in any war situation. It evolves according to what happens as the war is fought and this one is no different.

11:43 AM, November 29, 2006  
Blogger Rob said...

Ken, the Dems have never developed a unified strategy that would result in a quick pullout. So, I am not sure what policy and what promise to the base you are referring to.

Gayle, I have no idea how you think that the minority Dems and the MSM stopped Bush, Rumsfeld, and our troops from doing whatever they wanted to do. The fact is that our CIC has completely botched Iraq because he had no post-invasion plan.

The Dems aren't going to de-fund the war. They are just going to build a coalition with Republicans and develop a bi-partisan exit plan that the President will have to accept. The Dems alone cannot make Bush leave Iraq - but smart people in Washington will come together to end this quixotic misadventure in Iraq.

1:26 PM, November 29, 2006  
Anonymous mudkitty said...

I guess you don't remember when Saddam was Rummy's buddy, back when he waged war against Iran Back when the Reagan Administration proped up Saddam's regime while turning a blind eye to the crimes for which Saddam is now being tried. Must be nice to be so young that you don't remember it.

10:50 PM, November 29, 2006  
Blogger Rob said...

Maliki snubbed Bush yesterday - the Iraqi government no longer cares what Bush wants.

At the same time, Iraq's president has been negotiating with Iran this week to try to get help in curtailing the violence.

The Iraq Study Group is going to call for the U.S. to withdraw troops and end combat operations. I am confident that this bi-partisan report will lead to a bi-partisan effort in Congress to bring troops home.

Baker and smart folks who actually know something about the Middle East are going to offer suggestions that directly contradict Bush's misguided Iraq policy.

1:11 AM, November 30, 2006  
Anonymous mudkitty said...

It still won't be pretty.

Baby boy Bushie took a crap on Daddy's middle eastern rug, and the stench will never leave. It's the stuff of Greek myth, only it's happening metaphoricly, in our history.

11:23 AM, November 30, 2006  
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