Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Speech from Bizarro World

One of the best presidential speeches, if it wasn't founded on a very different reality than what we have on this planet.

He repeatedly touted the surge's success in Anbar province, when Anbar was chasing out insurgents before the surge began. In fact, Anbar in 2003 tried to get support from the US Army to take on the insurgents and the Army turned them down insisting on razing cities like Falujah.

He claimed a major reduction in bombings there where government officials do not live in fear of being beheaded, but the Anbar leader he spoke to was blown up today.

In Bizarro World, the war in Iraq is all about the fight against al-Qaeda and terrorists. We can sign long term colonial relationships with the Iraqi government that is falling apart. We lead a strong coalition of 36 nations in the war in Iraq! His troop reduction is a great compromise all Americans can get behind.

In our real world:
There was no al-Qaeda in Iraq before we invaded.
Al-Qaeda in Iraq was inspired by al-Qaeda but has very little connection to the al-Qaeda that attacked us.

Less than 3% of the bombings and of our military casualties have any connection to al-Qaeda in Iraq.

The Iraqi people may have turned against al-Qaeda, foreigners with messianic goals, but poll after poll show they support attacks on our occupying troops as they want their country back from our disastrous occupation.

There is no real Iraqi government, flying the Iraqi flag is forbidden in Kurdistan for example.

The great majority of the Iraqi Congress wants close ties with Iran.

Our only real military partner has already begun withdrawing.

Putting troop levels back to where they were last January by next summer is not some great compromise to unite Americans by the President. He just doesn't have more troops to send without massive withdrawals from other foreign bases.
John Edwards laid down the mission to Democrats - defund this war unless there is a faster withdrawal to end this war.
Our troops are stuck between a president without a plan to succeed and a Congress without the courage to bring them home.

But Congress must answer to the American people. Tell Congress you know the truth - they have the power to end this war and you expect them to use it. When the president asks for more money and more time, Congress needs to tell him he only gets one choice: a firm timeline for withdrawal.

No timeline, no funding. No excuses.

It is time to end this war.
MSNBC with Keith Olbermann and many others, was the place to watch tonight. A variety of opinions but just about all against the war except Republican presidential candidate Huckabee. We must fight this theological war against Islam, so says the former Baptist preacher who looked confused by the other opinions expressed. Biden: after being in Iraq five years there is no government in effect. Dodd:
"Moving us in 10 months to where we were 10 months ago is not progress. It is the very definition of status quo.

"Not only is the President not offering us anything new; he's insulting our intelligence."
The Iraqi and American people agree - bring the troops home. If the President doesn't agree - no more military funding. Let him veto, let the GOP filibuster. If they want money they are the ones who have to compromise.

Update - For my Houston Chronicle readers, Fred Kaplan at Slate agrees with me.

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