For those of you who didn’t see Peter DeFazio D-OR on C-SPAN on November 18, 2005 read the transcript of his rousing reaction to Duncan Hunter’ R-CA slap in the face of the troops and hijacking of Jack Murtha’s thoughtful resolution to redeploy the troops.
This week I received a reply to one of my letters regarding withdrawal of the troops. DeFazio, if you don’t know, began calling for a withdrawal last February.
This letter, just like a letter sent by Jack Murtha D-PA was effectively ignored by President Bush. In his letter to me DeFazio stands by his own withdrawal plan, and calls for a withdrawal timeline beginning after the December 15 parliamentary elections in Iraq.
DeFazio cites amongst his reasons for waiting until after the elections as a) early withdrawal would allow the insurgents to claim that violence drove the US out and b) withdrawal before the election could put the election at-risk if a full scale civil war erupted.
I believe DeFazio is sincere and has given his position a lot of thought. My own view regarding points a and b above are this. Our leaders keep speaking about sending the wrong message as if we are training some errant puppy. The insurgents are likely to claim victory, both moral and military no matter how or when we exit. They will probably call us cowards just like the latest video campaign from the GOP is accusing the Democrats of cowardice by waving white flags over their heads. It is too late now to worry about what the world will think of us, much less the insurgents. Having the maturity to admit that our blind faith in the current administration was misplaced and that the American people have now seen the light would probably do a lot more for our global standing and with the ‘insurgents’.
As to civil war in Iraq, well that is already happening and is probably inevitable and something that should have been planned for long before any invasion took place. Maintaining a presence to try an affect an outcome in other peoples’ business is just going from bad to worse. Give the Iraqis back their country they may not want a democracy or be culturally suited to one.
Regardless, both Jack Murtha and our own Peter DeFazio are working hard just not entirely on the same agenda.