Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Former Iraq commander calls for withdrawal

So now retired Lt. Gen Ricardo Sanchez has called for US troops in Iraq to be withdrawn within a year.

Sanchez's comments in support of Congressional legislation are all the more damning considering that he was actually the commander of US occupation forces in Iraq from 2003-04.

He condemned Iraqi politicians for their failure to show any leadership. "The improvements in security produced by the courage and blood of our troops have not been matched by a willingness on the part of Iraqi leaders to make the hard choices necessary to bring peace to their country," he said.

If a Bush appointee who implemented Bush's policies and who knows the military situation in Iraq better than nearly any other American has come to this conclusion, when will Congressional Democrats finally grow a spine?

If our former top soldier in Iraq can't provide the craven Democrats enough political cover to do what's right, then clearly they have no business running the Congress.

It makes you wonder when well-meaning liberals will finally figure out that the corporate-controlled Democratic Party is either unwilling or unable to implement a progressive agenda and, therefore, they ought to hitch their cart to another horse.


Brian said...

Any bets on the first reader to call Sanchez a traitor or accuse him of undermining troops' morale?

Anonymous said...

I just wish that he, and the rest of the big brass that has said the same after they retired, had the balls to speak up sooner.

Renegade Eye said...



semi234 said...

I sympathize w/ trying to get us out of this damn war. But Sanchez is politically compromised.

He oversaw Abhu Graib & tried to cover it up for so long until he was eventually forced out.

Phil BC said...

It's Catch 22, and the same problem here in Britain. Trade unionists. generally speaking, continue to support the Labour party, despite their regularly kicking the working class and the unions in the teeth, because there is no political alternative. And there's no political alternative because the constituency that would make it up are still tied to the Labour party.

The Democrats are odious, but nevertheless I suspect the same logic applies.

Kieran - A Social Skidmark said...

Nope he's not a traitor or undermining morale. He's just a typical solder who believes that politicians can't run a war from thousands of miles away. The person who needs to be in control of things like this should be where the action is. Politicians start wars, Generals command wars, and soldiers fight wars. Politicians need to stay out of the commanding and fighting part of it all together. They just make things worse.

Brian said...

Phil, good point. But the big difference that smaller parties in Britain are represented in Parliament. There is not as much of a mental bloc on the part of British voters for pulling the lever for a smaller party. And those disaffected with Labour's abandonment of the working class have the option of the Liberal Democrats, even if they want to stick to major parties. There is no major third force in this country, yet.

Brian said...

Kier: Well I figured he'd be a traitor for disagreeing with the president during wartime.

In any case, your analysis isn't wrong. But bear in mind a few things: there is quite often difference of opinions between the soldiers on the ground and the generals. The "military" does not always think the same thing. They're diverse, just like the rest of the country.

Second, our Constitution gives the president the power of commander-in-chief, the power to appoint subordinate commanders, subordinate as in taking orders from him and other civilian officials.

It gives Congress the power to fund (or not) military action. And it gives them joint power to declare war (which of course wasn't done in this case).

So while one could argue that the politicians shouldn't meddle too much, they do have constitutional duties in the area.

It's a tad hypocritical for the military to ask politicians to give them a blank check with hundreds of billions of dollars of our money and then expect no accountability whatsoever.