Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Only If Bush and Cheney Are Gone

Here we are this morning facing the fact that the Democrats don't have enough votes to force Bush to accept a timetable or binding benchmarks for withdrawing troops on the Iraq supplemental funding bill. The fact is that we all knew this was the case from last week’s vote on Feingold-Reid. The only "timeline" we now have is September and hundreds more will die before that point is reached. This is a shameful time for America and all of us who voted last year to change the way things are going have some serious questions about how we move our support forward. I am disappointed that the Democrats feel they have to concede to the Bush on this. I am even more upset to see the White House already crowing about having got everything that they wanted.

As it stands this supplemental funding bill lasts through the end of the fiscal year in September. Bush will need a new authorization to fund his wars for the next fiscal year and we will have another opportunity then to demand those votes to end the war. My fear is that come September we will see an effort on the part of the White House to just do more of the same. They are already laying the groundwork with various arguments about how Iraq has become a stronghold for Al Qaeda and that we cannot allow them to control Iraq.

In yesterday’s Washington Post, David Ignatius described the next “new” strategy ... We’re going to train the Iraq security forces, so that the Iraqi government can take more responsibility, while we push them to meet certain benchmarks for political accommodation. If that sounds familiar, it’s because it’s the same "strategy" we have used over and over again. Nothing new.

I have now shifted my position to the inescapable conclusion that until the country removes Bush and Cheney from office and gets a President who actually wants to end the occupation we will be in Iraq. I am now strongly in favor starting impeachment hearings immediately using the Bush/Cheney deceptions on Iraq to start followed closely by the subversion of the rule of law and civil rights at home. Granted there are several reasons why the country is not ready for impeachment, but that should not stop us from getting the ball rolling. The majority of this country is watching appalled as Iraq disintegrates and one after the other, another GOP scandal unfolds. Every poll tells us that the country wants this regime over. We need to make every effort to convince the people of this country that impeachment is the right process for bringing about the end of this unholy regime and that waiting until 2009 will requires too great a cost in lives and treasure. We cannot afford to wait.

The reality is that until Bush and Cheney are gone along with all their enablers we will be at war in Iraq and losing brave American soldiers by the hundreds. We have to redouble our efforts to shed the clear light of sanity of this administration not only with respect to Iraq but all the other scandals as well. Keep the pressure on.

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