24 January 2008

It seems like the Democrats, as can be expected, are up in arms about El Presidente's latest attempt to present himself as having a strong bond with the so-called Iraqi government - one that will keep American troops there for as long as John McCain thinks they should be.

Among the top critics is Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.). She has used the past two Democratic presidential debates to blast President Bush for his effort, as she put it Monday in South Carolina, "to try to bind the United States government and his successor to his failed policy."

Her concerns have been echoed by Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) and other Democratic lawmakers who are focusing their fire on the administration's plans for a long-term commitment to Iraq, after gaining little traction for their efforts to force a faster withdrawal of U.S. combat troops there.

(Somewhere, in the back of my mind, a little voice tells me how easy I was told the Iraq operation was supposed to be. We were supposed to be down to 30,000 troops there by the end of 2003. The President, after all, stood in front of a banner proclaiming to the world, "Mission Accomplished!"

Another little voice reminds me that I spent most of 2004 in Iraq, as casualties mounted, the Iraqi economy declined and my nation got sucked deeper into a quagmire, and it hasn't gotten any better, surge or no surge. Thanks for the reality check, other little voice!)
So here we are in 2008, nearly five years after the Iraq War started, and the Bush administration - one which equates rational problem-solving with defeat - is doing everything it can to basically say "not OUR problem!" They are setting up the next administration - assuming it's Democratic - for failure.
...Bush and his advisers express the private conviction that any presidential successor will find it hard to disengage from Iraq, no matter what is said on the campaign trail. One senior official, not authorized to speak publicly, said Clinton or any another would-be president will eventually welcome the agreement that the Bush administration intends to negotiate with the Iraqis.
"Is the next president going to say, 'I don't want to fight al-Qaeda in Iraq'? Maybe," this official said. "But I think they are going to want to, and we will give them the proper authorities."

I'm calling bullshit on this one. What this guy is really saying is that the only administration capable of working on a deal with Iraq is the current one, and what they are doing is locking Bush's successor into an agreement that won't give him/her any wiggle room to end the war.

Besides, "al-Qaeda in Iraq?" Really? No such animal existed until 2003, and even then, it's still a stretch to assume everyone there is AQI.

So, without further ado, I challenge all of our Senators and Congresspersons - of BOTH PARTIES - to challenge the administration on this.

BushCo's gone too long unchallenged, and when they are, it seems that all too often Congress caves.

It's time for this to end.

If the Dems are so up-in-arms about this, they must carry out their Constitutionally mandated duty and force the administration to run this agreement - which sounds more like a treaty - through the Senate.

Random thought of the day: Mayday is May 1, which happens to be the anniversary of the infamous speech on the deck of the USS Lincoln.

Has anyone given any thought to rebranding Mayday as 'Mission Accomplished Yet?' day ?

Also, I saw this little gem on the MNF-I Web site:

In August, electrical production of megawatts exceeded 5,000 for 25 days – producing enough power for approximately 450,000 homes.

That's it? After nearly five years?
Mission Accomplished, my ass.