Dem Views on Iraq: Get out Later vs. Get out Now


Craig Gilbert of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel has a good short summary out today on the differences in the main Democratic presidential hopefuls on how to proceed in the Iraq War.
This blogger is quoted in the piece, but the interesting thing is that while every major candidate is now “tilting” towards a position that contender Dennis Kucinich and former Presidential possibilities Russ Feingold and Tom Vilsack advocated — getting out of Iraq immediately — none of the others think that the US should begin withdrawing forces right away.
The article does a good job parsing the nuanced differences between Iraq related proposals from Richardson, Kucinich, Obama, Biden, Clinton, Edwards, and Dodd.
— Steve Clemons


18 comments on “Dem Views on Iraq: Get out Later vs. Get out Now

  1. Tony Foresta says:

    Tragically, I agree with most of your dim assessments of America, Iraq, and everything regarding the fascist warmongers and profiteers in the Bush government.
    We are, sadly, a nation run by monsterous fools and fascist warmongers and profiteers, – but those same monsterous fools, and fascist warmongers and profiteers and entrenched in the oil, energy, private military company, and defense oligarchs bent on marauding and profiteering from control of Iraq’s oil, – and those interests will be defended to the death.
    These are my reasons for believing America will never leave Iraq. The fascist warmongers and profiteers in the Bush government with, or without America’s backing, legally, or illegally, overtly or covertly (the “Octupus”) will remain in Iraq, maruadinig Iraq’s oil until, and unless every single one of them is removed from any influence in the government and sent to jail. And we all know that will never happen,.. so hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to marauding Iraq’s oil and neverendingwar and occupation we go.
    “Deliver us from evil!”


  2. Jim says:

    in the meantime, Chuck Hagel’s tapdancing about his own resolution looks slightly less noble than certains people tried to paint it two weeks ago:
    When his resolution hit the floor of the Senate, Hagel voted first against and then for allowing the debate to proceed. The first vote was an act of party loyalty, he said. He wanted to give Senate GOP leader McConnell negotiating leverage to win a vote on a separate resolution expressing opposition to cutting funds for troops in Iraq.
    Hagel acknowledged that the vote McConnell was seeking was intended to “embarrass the other party,” but argued, “Why not have the debate that we all say we want, let the resolutions come, let them be debated and let the American people sort it out?”


  3. Den Valdron says:

    That’s a bear trap not a cookie jar, John


  4. downtown says:

    Mike Tomasky eloquently put into words the way I feel about those 29 Democrats who voted yea on Resolution 114:


  5. Carroll says:

    Now this is interesting.
    “Hagel Flirts With ’08 Run On ‘Hybrid’ Ticket”
    I can’t get more interested in all the dems evolving positions on Iraq…because well they will just change as their consultants all stick their fingers up to see which way the wind is blowing.
    I really am more interested in seeing what the possibilities are of some real shake-ups in this election and changes in the usual political system.
    I would love to see Hagel, Clark and GORE all enter the race….I think then the public would be whipped sawed all over the place and have to do some actual thinking outside the box for a change.
    In my wildest daydreams I see a new adm with Gore as President and Hagle or Clark as VP’s who would actively represent a new diplomatic front for change in our ME policy.


  6. Carroll says:

    Let’s also be watching what the dems have to say about Bush’s budget as well as Iraq. A friend mailed me this article this morning..looking at everything altogether from Iraq to domestic issues to the condition of our society, our press, our ruling by elites…I have to upset Steve by asking…”how long to the revolution?”
    I like a tax break as much as anyone but we are going insane from greed here folks…this budget, like Iraq, sums up what a sham free enterprise and democracy has become in the US.
    Maybe We Deserve to Be Ripped Off By Bush’s Billionaires
    By Matt Taibbi, Posted February 20, 2007.
    While America obsessed about Brittany’s shaved head, Bush offered a budget that offers $32.7 billion in tax cuts to the Wal-Mart family alone, while cutting $28 billion from Medicaid


  7. Carroll says:

    I don’t know anyone in real life who thinks we can “win” anything in Iraq any longer. Among people who comment to me, they are divided between get out now (the majority) and those who say we broke it so we have to “try” to fix it…but even when they say that, it is obvious they don’t expect victory and their “feelings” are we just have to take our punishment and hang in there till the bitter end.
    I have never seen anything like this..for everything Bush&Co says and does, nothing is really proactive….all kinds of players are running rampant in Iraq and funding the various effort has been made to actually secure any borders and prevent outsiders from adding to the chaos. There have been many discussions on whether this is by design or from sheer stupidy. Since Iraq could not be subdued into a US regional power base from which to control that region perhaps the PNAC boys alternate plan is using Iraq to draw Iran into their sights. Which means our troops are really just being used as bait for the trap.


  8. JohnH says:

    But Den, now that we have our hand in the cookie jar, we can’t leave without the cookie (the oil. Democraps and Republicscum and the national security mafia can at least all agree on that! Telling the people that they can’t burn all the gasoline they want would be far worse than telling them that we lost Iraq. Why, our ‘leaders’ might even lose their jobs!


  9. Den Valdron says:

    I appreciate Tonly Foresta’s sentiment. But the reality is that America will be leaving Iraq, as it left Vietnam, as it left Cambodia and Laos.
    It will leave in disgrace, and in helicopters and in pine boxes and body bags. The ‘Enduring Bases’ will become choked off, then irrelevant, then abandoned. The Green Zone will go gradually red, and then be abandoned.
    The American empire still has some notion that it can rule Iraq from fortified enclaves, operating its government like finger puppets.
    Maybe once upon a time that would have worked. I don’t see it working now. Any finger puppet government will have no credibility. It’s actions on behalf of its master will be the actions of a dog in fear of whipping.
    Unfortunately, the insurgency holds at least a greater whip hand, and the Americans, from the security of their fortified enclaves can protect no one and nothing.
    All America has to offer Iraq is violence and horror.
    If morality would not persuade America to leave, perhaps the strategic hopelessness would.
    Sadly no. You have become a nation willing to be lead by monstrous fools.
    And you will play the game to its bitter, bitter end.
    The Iraqi’s will curse your name for generations.


  10. JohnH says:

    Kissinger calls for an international conference on Iraq.
    “Wise leaders on all sides are needed to establish an international order that provides security to all participants and respect to all religions.” Wow! Security for Muslim states!
    But where are the wise leaders? Why can’t Democrats embrace this as positive way to solve the problem?
    The major obstacle: it doesn’t guarantee the dramatic increase in oil production that the industrialized world needs. And it doesn’t guarantee a big role for Big Oil.


  11. liz says:

    from josh at talking points memo’s.
    Documents captured after 9/11 showed that bin Laden hoped to provoke the United States into an invasion and occupation that would entail all the complications that have arisen in Iraq. His only error was to think that the place where Americans would get stuck would be Afghanistan.
    Bin Laden also hoped that such an entrapment would drain the United States financially. Many al-Qaeda documents refer to the importance of sapping American economic strength as a step toward reducing America’s ability to throw its weight around in the Middle East.
    when should we leave? Oh when Oh when?


  12. Tony Foresta says:

    Here’s where factbasedreality smothers spin. The factbasedreality is that America is NEVER leaving Iraq. We have fourteen “enduring bases”, a billion dollar embassy, the Emeral City, otherwise known as the “green zone”, and all that Iraqi oil to maruand, – so it is the hieght of dihonesty and disingenousness for any politician of commentarian to suggest there will ever be a total withdrawl from Iraq.
    This “withdrawl” nonesense, disinformation and naked lie is key component of information warfare and slime campaigns the facsist warmongers and profiteers in the Bush government heap on democrats – the oft quoted scurrilous slander – known as cutting and running.
    Redeployments are inevitible. The US military must end the reckless, senseless, failing, fascist politices of forcing our troops to police the Iraqi civil war, storm into Iraqi neighborhoods, beat down Iraqi doors, and terrorize the Iraqi people hunting for insurgents who blend seemlessly into the population we are supposed to be “liberating, – and quit roaming through Iraqi’ cities like legionaires wasting bloody and treasure on a fruitless mission that cannot be won militarily.
    American force will hopefully be reduced significantly, redeploy to hardened bases outside of Iraqi cities, protect the flow of oil, whatever emerges as Iraqi governments (plural), provide humanitarian assistance and resume their most critical mission of hunting, capturing, and killing jihadist mass murderers.
    These POLICE and INTELLIGENCE actions do not and should, and cannot involve invasions and occupations and American soldiers walking through hostile area’ in uniform with targets on the backs.
    These POLICE and INTELLIGENCE actions will require the use of covert, and/or special operations, humint, are our best assets and efforts working undercover, in small cells, speaking the language, eating the food, living the lifestyles, and wearing the garb of our enemies. Of course our half a trillion dollar defense industry and all the brilliant weapons and assets, black and white in our arsenal will be employed in concert and as support.
    A hundred thousand plus US soldiers as an occupying force will never accomplish this mission. A hundred thousand plus occupying force is too huge and slow, the logistics involved are too large, the costs in blood and treasure too cumbersome, and most importantly they are obvious and easy targets to insurgents using IED, RPG’s, and AK-47’s.
    The only reason our military is forced into this costly, bloody, noendinsight, and unwinnable horrorshow – is because the fascist warmongers and profiteers in the Bush government PROFIT wantonly in and from the nefarious process.
    American forces will redeploy and reduce, – but we are NEVER leaving Iraq.


  13. David says:

    “The dynamic of this creates a bidding war for primary voters to see who can get further to the left by the time the election is held,” Does this mean that the majority of Americans have already moved “further to the left”? Lord I hope so.


  14. Pissed Off American says:

    March 12 Protest: Congress Stand Up to AIPAC
    Mon.Mar.12.2007@6:00PM to Mon.Mar.12.2007@8:00PM
    Call to Protest AIPAC’s Annual Conference Issued 2/21/07 MONDAY, MARCH 12 – 6 to 8 PM DC Convention Center, Mount Vernon Place between 7th & 9th Streets NW
    Stop Funding Crimes Against Palestinians And Iraq and Iran Wars


  15. Dennis says:

    The U.S. isn’t going to make any “progress” until members of Congress put the needs of the nation ahead of their personal politics. The Republicans have been a “Yes Sir!” disaster, and the Democrats too weak spined; all of them too beholden to big business to uphold their oath of office and protect the Constitution and the best welfare of the American people.
    Perhaps, also, one of the reasons we can’t stay out of war is that the Pentagon is the largest “industry” (if not the only one left) we have in this country.
    You don’t have to be a blind conservative not to see it, just an ignorant one to deny it.


  16. gq says:

    Hi Steve,
    I’m of the view that the battle over when to get out of Iraq is secondary to stopping a war with Iran. In my lot, Biden, Richardson and Clark are the only Dem candidates trying to take steps to prevent the next war from happening. I think I remember you mentioning you would come back to possible consequences of a strike on Iran. Any more insight into that? I’m personally getting more than a little nervous about this.


  17. billjpa says:

    parsing shmarsing- the fact is that we should be starting to get out now cause this kind of move does not happen overnight!
    And while we are starting to get out- how about getting the house to start writing articles of impeachment!


  18. Pissed Off American says:

    The individual Dem’s positions on Iraq can be determined by their relationship with AIPAC and Isreal. The less beholden they are to the Israeli lobbys and interests, the more prone they are for immediate withdrawal. Kucinich, who refuses to bend over for Israel, advocates getting the hell out of Dodge, NOW. Hillary, who is firmly in bed with Israel, helped sell the Iraq Invasion, is rattling the sword at Iran, and therefore cannot be trusted no matter WHAT she states publically about what she would do about Iraq.
    I find it interesting that Kucinich is the ONLY candidate that freely admits and stresses that this is about STEALING Iraq’s oil. And, it is no coincidence that he is not beholding to AIPAC, and is a candidate willing to speak truth.


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