Leading Democrat In Senate Tells Reporters, 'This War Is Lost'




 
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Leading Democrat In Senate Tells Reporters, 'This War Is Lost'
 
April 20th, 2007  
Team Infidel
 
 

Topic: Leading Democrat In Senate Tells Reporters, 'This War Is Lost'


Leading Democrat In Senate Tells Reporters, 'This War Is Lost'
New York Times
April 20, 2007
Pg. 12
By Jeff Zeleny
WASHINGTON, April 19 — As Congressional Democrats sought to reconcile their differences and send an Iraq spending bill to the White House, Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, said Thursday that “this war is lost,” a stark assessment that Republicans argued would demoralize American troops fighting in Iraq.
One day after legislative leaders met with President Bush, failing to find common ground, House Democrats signaled their intention to step away from a mandatory deadline to remove troops from Iraq, and to work instead toward a compromise of setting a goal for troops to be withdrawn next year.
But the president said that any timetable for a troop redeployment, even a goal, would face a veto. “I think it’s a mistake, and I’ve made it clear, that the Congress should not have artificial timetables for withdrawal in a funding statement,” Mr. Bush said Thursday during a speech in Ohio.
In Washington, Mr. Reid delivered a biting critique of the Iraq war, saying there was no military solution to the conflict. At a news conference, he recounted a private conversation with the president about the Vietnam War, saying he told Mr. Bush not to follow the path of President Lyndon B. Johnson, who “did not want a war loss on his watch.”
“I believe myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense and — you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows — that this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq,” Mr. Reid said.
Republicans across the Capitol responded angrily to Mr. Reid’s statement.
“I can’t begin to imagine how our troops in the field, who are risking their lives every day, are going to react when they get back to base and hear that the Democrat leader of the United States Senate has declared the war is lost,” Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, said.
Representative Peter Hoekstra, a Michigan Republican, said: “If Harry Reid believes that this war is lost, where is his plan to win this war?”
The confrontation between the Democratic majority and Republicans in Congress and in the administration unfolded as the House conducted another debate on Thursday evening on a timetable for withdrawing troops from Iraq.
As House leaders appointed negotiators to work with the Senate to reconcile their two Iraq spending bills, Republicans demanded another vote on a simple question: Should major combat missions end by Sept. 1, 2008?
The procedural motion passed largely along party lines on a vote of 215 to 199.
The vote was intended to highlight fissures inside the Democratic caucus, where some conservative members have expressed skepticism about setting timelines for withdrawal. It was the same topic the House tackled last month when passing the Iraq spending bill, but Republicans were hoping to draw out any inconsistencies.
At least four Democrats changed their votes on Thursday evening and opposed the timetable, after supporting it the first time around.
Representative David R. Obey of Wisconsin, the Democratic Appropriations Committee chairman, who will lead the conference committee, said Congress should be working to change directions in Iraq. “There are a lot of people who are apparently willing to fight until the last drop of somebody’s blood falls,” Mr. Obey said. “I think it’s time for that to stop.”
Representative Jack Kingston, a Georgia Republican, said the administration’s troop increase deserved a chance to succeed. But if progress is not achieved by fall, he said, “a heck of a lot of us will start peeling away.”
Next week, the House and Senate will reconcile the competing pieces of legislation they passed last month and send a new bill to the White House. House Democratic leaders have convened meetings throughout the week with their members, urging them to accept a compromise calling for a goal, as the Senate has done, not a mandatory deadline.
“The president is going to veto it anyway, so what difference does it make?” said Representative James P. Moran, Democrat of Virginia. “This bill is a shell of itself. It’s not worth fighting over.”
The bigger challenge for Democrats is devising a strategy for what comes after the president follows through with his repeated veto pledge. Democrats said they would not endanger troops by holding up the spending request for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Pentagon said Thursday that it had enough money to finance the war through June, but no longer. Until then, the Army has instructed its personnel to consider delaying the purchase of nonessential repair parts, restricting the use of government credit cards and limiting travel.
Gordon D. Johndroe, a spokesman for the administration, criticized Mr. Reid’s suggestion that the war had already been lost. “If this is his true feeling, than it makes one wonder if he has the courage of his convictions and therefore will decide to de-fund the war,” Mr. Johndroe said.
Representative Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, the Democratic majority leader, came to the House floor to state his party’s position. “There is nobody in this Congress who wants to lose this war,” he said. “Everybody wants to protect this country.”
Jim Rutenberg contributed reporting from Tipp City, Ohio.
April 21st, 2007  
Padre
 
 

Mr Reid may very well be right that the war is lost, but we can thank people like him for its loss because what fuels the insurgents is their belief that if they can crack the weaklings in the US Congress and media, then the insurgents win. That's what an inferior but clever force does in its strategy against a powerful opponent.

If they can have just enough car bombs and killings for the American television public (ATP) then the ATP wont care how much progress has been made elsewhere in Iraq which doesn't get as much media coverage, all they want are their troops home from Mr Reid's already lost war.

Mission Accomplished Osama & Co.


however this is something that bodes well if the US can hang on another 12 months.......

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18234571/
 


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