Sunday, August 28, 2005

Gary Hart Speaks Out, Bush's worst Days lie ahead

Gary Hart, former senator and presidential aspirant, and with Warren Rudman one of the two chairs of the security commission whose warnings were ignored by the administration prior to Sep 11, has spoken out about the Democrats (Who will say, 'No More'?). Here are excerpts:

"Like the cat that jumped on a hot stove and thereafter wouldn't jump on any stove, hot or cold, today's Democratic leaders didn't want to make that mistake again. Many supported the Iraq war resolution and -- as the Big Muddy is rising yet again -- now find themselves tongue-tied or trying to trump a war president by calling for deployment of more troops. Thus does good money follow bad and bad politics get even worse."

Hart continues:

"History will deal with George W. Bush and the neoconservatives who misled a mighty nation into a flawed war...But what will history say about an opposition party that stands silent while all this goes on?

To stay silent during such a crisis, and particularly to harbor the thought that the administration's misfortune is the Democrats' fortune, is cowardly. In 2008 I want a leader who is willing now to say: "I made a mistake, and for my mistake I am going to Iraq and accompanying the next planeload of flag-draped coffins back to Dover Air Force Base. And I am going to ask forgiveness for my mistake from every parent who will talk to me."

The real defeatists today are not those protesting the war. The real defeatists are those in power and their silent supporters in the opposition party who are reduced to repeating "Stay the course" even when the course, whatever it now is, is light years away from the one originally undertaken."

None of the Democrats in the Senate or House will come anywhere close to this. The most disappointing is Howard Dean, who is actually suggesting increasing troop strength!

Also in the Washington Post, an article by Colbert I. King, saying, "Bush's worst days are ahead". King says there are two tracks in progress -- while Bush goes around the country trumpeting the call to arms, Washington's officialdom is quietly resigning itself to a different reality, that Iraq will remain a violent, theocratic, spoils system after the Americans leave. One of the officials is quoted as saying (rough paraphrase), "We will not say a day longer than necessary. But necessary for us or for the Iraqis?"

From King's article:

"Consider the Iraq now unfolding on the ground.

What's the value of Americans giving their lives so that cleric-dominated Shiites and northern Kurds can get their hands on political power and oil revenue?

Why are American women and men sacrificing lives and limbs in a country where women may have to settle for less?

Stay the course. What course? So religious-based militia can divvy up the northern and southern portions of the country? So Islam can be enshrined as a principal source of new Iraqi legislation?

Are any of those things worth dying for? Do any of those likely outcomes represent an American victory? They certainly aren't why Bush said we went over there.

Okay, the Bush folks also promised us weapons of mass destruction, and greetings with rice and rose water, and Iraqi oil money to pay for reconstruction, and a model new democracy in the Middle East, none of which has happened.

But this is different.

President Bush is out selling a vision of victory in Iraq while U.S. officials in Washington and Baghdad are resigned to settling for less. George Bush can't make good on his original promise, and they know it. They also know that more Americans are going to die in Iraq for what may end up as a theocracy-tinged spoils system.

When those carrying the burden of this war realize what they have sacrificed and died for, the worst days of George W. Bush will have just begun."

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