Friday, August 31, 2007

The Audacity of Dopes: Dem Frontrunners Have Weird Definitions of Withdrawal.

Per Yglesias: Indeed, Bill Richardson may be asking the important questions, vis a vis Iraq withdrawal, but the record should reflect that his own answers aren't very realistic. As recorded here, and elsewhere, Richardson claimed, at the CNN/YouTube Debate, that withdrawal was possible in six months. Yet, recalling the obstacles Michael Duffy mentioned in his piece for Time ("How to Leave Iraq") it's crystal clear that six months is a naive estimation.

But Matt's larger point, which also brings the Duffy article to mind, is worth reiterating:

I'm not sure many liberals have really grasped how absurd it is that we seem destined to witness a 2008 campaign in which both major party nominees support continuing the war. Nor do the Clinton/Obama/Edwards camps seem to have given serious consideration to the fact that their general election adversary will probably find it relatively easy to ridicule this "end the war, but keep fighting it" stance the Democrats have all adopted.
Speaking only for myself, I've been a little more out in front of grasping this absurdity than many others, and have been somewhat slagged for suggesting that the Democratic candidates are substituting "sloganeering" for leveling with the American people. That's why this New York Times article is valuable, for providing cogent and succinct descriptions of the policies the Dem frontrunners actually support in Iraq, to be compared to the promises, panderings, compromises and bargainings they'll do between now and election day on the campaign trail. To wit:

John Edwards, the former North Carolina senator, would keep troops in the region to intervene in an Iraqi genocide and be prepared for military action if violence spills into other countries. Senator =Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York would leave residual forces to fight terrorism and to stabilize the Kurdish region in the north. And Senator Barack Obama of Illinois would leave a military presence of as-yet unspecified size in Iraq to provide security for American personnel, fight terrorism and train Iraqis.
Yeah, well, okay then: precisely NONE of the leading candidates for the Democratic nomination support the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. It's just that simple. I'd go further, and suggest that the reasons Obama lays out for retaining a "military presence" of "unspecified size"--provide security, train Iraqis, fight the terrorists--are EXACTLY THE SAME reasons the Administration currently cites for why we must stay the course.


Sunny said...

disgusting isn't it. How can you be anti-war and pro-war at the same time? But America doesn't have a very good history of ending a war and actually leaving. We have residual forces everywhere.

Worse than continuing this war would be to walk away and have the war follow our soldiers home. I wonder how the anti-war crowd would like it if the fighting broke out in US streets?

The Deceiver said...

"I wonder how the anti-war crowd would like it if the fighting broke out in US streets?"

You wonder? I'd have to imagine that if they were, in fact, "anti-war" they'd probably, uhm...frown on it.