One of the things most folks don’t like is caviling, defined as “raising trivial and frivolous objection.” This is what the good representatives and senators are doing in Washington these days with their ridiculous non-binding resolutions, seen by those with walking-around-sense as the using of convenient platforms to try to make points with their constituencies, especially if they think their records don’t quite square with what they understand the pollsters to be determining currently.
The congress-folks – mostly the democrats, that is – see the president as a severely wounded lame-duck, caught on the horns of a dilemma in Iraq that many of them helped create, but now want to disavow as completely as possible without appearing to be complete fools/hypocrites. Sitting in their plush offices and checking the polls – or having some apparatchik do it each day – they figure ways to “bring the troops home,” having figured that the public demands it. Consequently, they’ve decided to run the war in Congress.
These people screamed for a “new direction” last year, and when the president delivered it they screamed more loudly that they didn’t like his new plan – the absolute pacification of Baghdad through using an enlarged troop presence. The head honcho in Iraq believes in the plan, especially as he understands that his people have to “step up” and meet benchmarks, thus initiating and then accelerating the withdrawal of American GIs. There has been some success already, as the Sunnis and Shiites realize that the sooner Americans are gone the better, since they can settle each other’s hash then, and only then.
On NBC-TV’s Meet the Press (Feb. 18), Republican Senator Lugar and Democrat Senator Biden expressed great hope that the president would call in members of Congress for the hammering-out of “non-partisan” approaches, forgetting apparently that wars are not conducted by committee, and that the term “non-partisan” means absolutely nothing in today’s Congress, where the long knives are out on both sides of the aisle. Indeed, four democrats in the Senate, including Biden, are trying to gain the oval office, and there may be more to come.
Maybe the term “hypocrite” is a bit strong, but one wonders. Senator Biden voted for the Iraqi action, as did Senator Kerry and former senator Edwards, the democrat contenders in 2004 to take over the government. All three have been backpedaling for a long time. Senate Majority Leader Reid voted for the authorization for whatever the president deemed necessary in 2002, and now he spends his time whining about the fact that things haven’t gone to suit him. House Majority Leader Hoyer voted for the Iraqi action in 2002, but now he’s unhappy.
These stalwarts in their offices (Speaker Pelosi “earning” $212,100 per year while an army private eating dust and facing death in Iraq makes just over $14,000) understand war to be as predictable as the calendar, but have no sense of history. There was no warning (intelligence snafu?) about the German buildup in Belgium in December 1944, but in five short weeks (Battle of the Bulge) 19,000 Americans were killed and more than 23,500 captured and sent to German POW hellholes. In February 1945, American forces laid as much bombardment as at any time or place in World War II on the island of Iwo Jima, but never figured how ineffective it was. The result: In 36 days, there were 25, 851 American casualties, with 6,825 killed. War as predictable – what a laugh! No war is predictable, and the wonder is that there haven’t been far more casualties in Iraq. In these battles, 25,825 Americans died in about five weeks, eight times the number in Iraq in five years.
This is not to say even one death is tolerable. It is to say that these congressional whiners, rather than encourage the troops, are so wrapped up in their petty partisan politics that they give the enemy the predictable notion that the GIs’ own lawmakers don’t support them…and the majority of them don’t. The democrats’ worse fears are that the objective will be reached in Iraq and that consequently they might not have a case in 2008. A pox on all of them!
The Iraqis are welcome to settle their sectarian or civil-war problems any way they choose, but the battle there involves this country’s letting the world know that terrorism will not be tolerated by Americans. Almost the entire Middle East is driven and governed by Islamic-oriented despots/religionists bent on world conquest in the name of Allah. This country – practically the only one with any strength, except for England – has drawn a line in the sand, and the congressional crybabies will do well to suck it up, shut up, and let the world see some spine out of its elected leaders.