Video: Troops are protecting Sunnis, Shias, and Kurds, says Reid — so let’s start withdrawing

posted at 6:23 pm on July 9, 2007 by Allahpundit

U.S. troops are fighting heroically, the entire population across sects is dependent upon them for security — so we should really start pulling them out of there, don’t you think? I like that little smile that crosses his face momentarily when he talks about the Iraqi town that was reduced to rubble by a truck bomb. That’s the look of a man with Senate seats within his grasp.

You may not recognize it at first glance but there’s an olive branch being extended here. Reid knows he can’t push for immediate withdrawal the way the cretins on the New York Times’s editorial board would like lest a genocide result and those Senate seats he’s got his eye on evaporate. So he’s touting Baker-Hamilton as an interim compromise solution: withdrawal of most combat troops with a small force left to target Al Qaeda and plenty of advisors to train the increasingly dubious Iraqi army. Then, if and when the country starts to disintegrate, they can call for total withdrawal on grounds that they need to get our boys out of harm’s way. It’s a two-step solution, and one which Bush, now apparently “in panic mode,” will probably be happy to accept. Ace thinks it might be worth trying a little shamnesty-esque direct action but I don’t think that’s going to work this time. No matter how many calls they’d be getting, they can still read the polls. We simply don’t have the numbers.

Thanks once again to mighty, mighty wingman for cutting this. Exit question: Given the trisectarian pleading from Iraqi officials this morning urging Congress not to pull out, who exactly is Reid thinking of when he says the Iraqis want us gone? Sadr?


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Can we call them the “Pro-Genocide” lobby?

TBinSTL on July 9, 2007 at 6:26 PM

“No one is calling for a precipitous withdrawal in Iraq. No one.”

These aren’t the droids you’re looking for…

Does he think that actually works?

Bad Candy on July 9, 2007 at 6:27 PM

This needs an anger likely content warning. Only play this video if you really want to be pissed.

On-my-soap-box on July 9, 2007 at 6:30 PM

The Dems need troops home and surrendered by the next election. Idiot ideas like leaving back just some troops and deploying them from Taiwan are the best this Party of Peace can come up with.

They can’t do war, and are trying their very hardest to prove it while putting our military and security at risk.

Hening on July 9, 2007 at 6:34 PM

The democrats army. (Sent to me by someone in the air force)

New army poster

William Amos on July 9, 2007 at 6:35 PM

Ummm… doesn’t he read?

Most of the major bombings right now are from AL Q in IRAQ!!!! How can we use even LESS troops to combat them when we can’t supress them with the troops we have there now?

Let alone Iran…

And Syria is massing on the Israeli border… and has moved 3 KM inside Lebanon…

And we captured MORE Iranians in Iraq this week…

Sigh…

Romeo13 on July 9, 2007 at 6:35 PM

Incredible! Somebody needs to find the rock Reid crawled from under and fumigate the ground beneath it to preclude a recurrence.

rplat on July 9, 2007 at 6:35 PM

How about a campaign to help bring pro-Democracy Iraqi bloggers to the US (or Canada, or Europe, or hell even Jordan) before it all goes dark and we never hear from them again.

We’ve (collectively as a nation and many of us as individuals) made some intelligent, progressive (in the good way,) revolutionary (also in the good way) friends on the other side of the world. Reid wants to throw them to the wolves (and worse) to keep his party in power. Sounds extreme, but it’s hard to see it any other way.

Hannibal Smith on July 9, 2007 at 6:35 PM

Who are “they” that dropped the bomb? Is he blaming us and couldn’t say it or them and admitting we have a job to do.

Then, he smiled about the town being disintegrated!

On-my-soap-box on July 9, 2007 at 6:40 PM

AP,
In that news conference Webb said “I don’t care what Petraeus says in July and I don’t care what Petraeus says in September”.

The public should see that disregard for facts on the ground. Maybe then it will be clear that the Dems really need defeat in Iraq to defeat the Republicans.

TunaTalon on July 9, 2007 at 6:41 PM

Ried need’s to start eating more Brain food.

ajmontana on July 9, 2007 at 6:41 PM

just keep emboldering al quieda Harry, that one thing your congress has been good at

robo on July 9, 2007 at 6:46 PM

Their has been a surge (planned by the MSM and democratic minions) to defeat our president and our armed forces. Regardless, of your feelings this is horrible.

tomas on July 9, 2007 at 6:50 PM

just keep emboldering al quieda Harry, that one thing your congress has been good at

robo on July 9, 2007 at 6:46 PM

It wouldn’t surprise me to find out that Reid Pelosi, etc… have offshore bank accounts where al Qaeda makes monthly deposits.

Capitalist Infidel on July 9, 2007 at 7:17 PM

Democrats: America’s other *RED* meat.

georgej on July 9, 2007 at 7:19 PM

Ol Harry thinks everyone is as dumb as he is. He is one who is actually as dumb as he looks.

countywolf on July 9, 2007 at 7:20 PM

“Shamnety-esque direct action”? AllahPundit is right, we’re outnumbered. Hopelessly. And it gets worse everyday, not just in the Congress but also among average people. It’s always hard to argue against “bring our boys home” sentiment. I think the ABC piece was right – Bush and the Masters of the Universe will put together some sort of Grand Compromise that, like the dreaded shamnesty, will really be political cover for a collapse of will. Reid doesn’t care about genocide. Why should he (apart from humanitarian concerns)? I doubt his constituents are telling him that they care. That’s leadership, right? ;-/

The genocide and atrocity arguments won’t work. We’re outflanked here, people. I’m not sure there’s much we can do about it. Bush is hanging on by a thin thread. How many more Republican Senators need to join the Fab Four before there’s a mad rush for the door? Four more? Two? Going once. Going twice …

Thomas the Wraith on July 9, 2007 at 7:23 PM

William Amos on July 9, 2007 at 6:35 PM

Show this to your Air Force buddy. Mute your computer first though, the sound gets a little old.

BadgerHawk on July 9, 2007 at 7:26 PM

The rebuilding of the Iraqi Army has really been the true disaster of this whole affair. They are not ready now, and if the past is any indicator, they won’t be ready any time soon. I don’t want the place to completely collapse, but how long is this training operation going to take?

WisCon on July 9, 2007 at 7:42 PM

Show this to your Air Force buddy. Mute your computer first though, the sound gets a little old.

BadgerHawk on July 9, 2007 at 7:26 PM

Badgerhawk,

I haven’t seen that one since I was in a Joint-Service unit in the late 1990s. I really like that cartoon it says it all. The grunts would go into the field and the Air Force would go to the Hilton (and we liked it there too).

KC-135A on July 9, 2007 at 7:47 PM

Calling Dennis Miller…

Spirit of 1776 on July 9, 2007 at 8:10 PM

This will take as long as it takes…this is different and more entrenched than anything we have ever faced…the only way to defeat it is head on and with courage. DId you notice the large amount of articles and defections right before Reid said he was going to bring this up. It is a traitors effort and one that must fail. Our country was a new and untried effort and it took much longer…never give up.

tomas on July 9, 2007 at 8:26 PM

Reid’s face always reminds me of someone trying to use a condom twice.

“We don’t have enough troops in country to solve the problem… so let’s draw down the amount of troops we have …to solve the problem.”

What part of flaming suicidal idiocy doesn’t Reid grasp?

Why hadn’t even one Democrat ever said:

Goddman it, let’s unleash our brave forces to finally fight this war for real, and kick these medieval maniacs back to the Dark Ages where they came from..”

It’s always appeasement, surrender, and variations on the same craven idicoy.

Don’t they understand that resurgent Islamic imperialism is coming for their Civilization and their very necks?

And won’t be bought off by playing nice and running away to the mythical “moral highground”?

(Joe Lieberman is an Independent, so he doesn’t count.)

profitsbeard on July 9, 2007 at 8:27 PM

that little smile that crosses his face momentarily when he talks about the Iraqi town that was reduced to rubble by a truck bomb

Utterly disgusting. He just can’t hide his glee.

kjspeedial on July 9, 2007 at 8:42 PM

He comes out with these statements right after a bunch of innocent people have been slaughtered…no shame. They aren’t some sound bite dick head

tomas on July 9, 2007 at 8:45 PM

Arrrrrrrggghhh!!!!!

*WHAM WHAM WHAM*

I just strangled my monitor…

Insomniac on July 9, 2007 at 9:26 PM

Who are “they” that dropped the bomb? Is he blaming us and couldn’t say it or them and admitting we have a job to do.

Then, he smiled about the town being disintegrated!

In a way both. He thinks that Iraqis dropped the bomb but that every action and reaction in this conflict is traceable to the US. In other words he is denying the Iraqis human agency. This attitude is more contemptible than that of the colonial class that ran British India. It’s a product of liberal narcissism and self-loathing.

aengus on July 9, 2007 at 9:30 PM

On-my-soap-box on July 9, 2007 at 6:30 PM

It succeeded. That’s the only time I’ve seen a smile on that clown’s face since they took over the house. Scary when a corpse smiles. Also, people like this can get elected, but St. Cindy shouldn’t be taken too seriously? hmmm

PowWow on July 9, 2007 at 9:46 PM

This may be old news but I hear that Sen Olympia Snowe will call for withdrawal from Iraq. So Bush is losing a Republican Senator every 5 days. How long can this last?

Thomas the Wraith on July 9, 2007 at 10:17 PM

OK… wait a sec…

We’re gonna leave troops to fight Al Q and terrorism…

And train Iraqis….

and support….

Uh… isn’t that what we are doing now?

Romeo13 on July 9, 2007 at 10:40 PM

Reid’s World, Reid’s World. He really should have a theme song. Where does he come up with this stuff? It’s certainly not from Iraqis or troops on the ground. Precipitous too what. Does he even hear what he’s saying?

oakpack on July 9, 2007 at 10:49 PM

“We simply don’t have the numbers.”

And that’s the acid test for the conservative blogosphere, as it is for any minority, because we’ll almost never have the numbers. Sure, we can rally public opinion, but can we actually influence it? We spend most of our time preaching to the converted instead of figuring out how to challenge conventional wisdom where it counts. There’s plenty of intelletual firepower on this side of the argument; if we’re not equpped to negotiate the rock & the hard place we now confront, it’s the template, stupid!

Liberals didn’t start out with the numbers either, but what they do have is a compelling narrative which is almost impervious to the kind of fact checking endeavors we’re all so good at. Debunking is easy, and when we were in the majority on the war it may have seemed suffiicient, but we’re still fisking away instead of developing a competitive narrative of our own. If the pullout Democrats are looking for occurs, it won’t just be an Adminstration failure, it will be ours too.

Make no mistake about it, there is a White House failure here, and no help on the way from that quarter. They never understood the role of story telling in politics on the first place. Folks may take offense, but they were selling immigration the same way they’ve sold pretty much everything else, including Iraq. Plan B is even simpler than Plan A: You pull up the drawbridge and try to present the smallest, hardest target you can manage. You replace Rumsfeld with the lowest profile guy you can persude to take the job, and then create a war czar to confuse the field.

Before the ’06 election, we could get away with ignoring a defection by someone like Richard Lugar. Unfortunately, with the President in full Turtle Mode, there’s only one storyline in town. It’s Baker/Hamilton, the liberals own it, and we have a decision to make. We can keep on talking amongst ourselves, or we can work on figuring out how to engage the opposition where it counts. The snark, and the ridicule, and the outrage we share are no substitute for a coherent argument, and they don’t make an unpopular argument any easier to sell.

It’s true that we can’t just channel public opinion into Congress this time around, but if being in the minority is an unsurmountable obstacle, why are we even here? The war effort is at risk because of Republican defections, and that’s something we should be able to do something about. Democrats have successfully made this George Bush’s war, and that’s a double whammy we’ve got a lame duck President whose popularity has also tanked. Maybe it’s actually a stroke of luck that the Prez seems to have given up campaigning for the war, because Republicans need something to defend that is not Bush’s war. What they desperately lack are cheat sheets on the Democrats “facts” and a comprehensive not-Bush set of talking points that knock your socks off.

And guess what! The New York Times just handed us that storyline on a silver platter. They’ve done the one thing that almost no Democrat but Murtha has been dumb enough to do till now: they gave us an actual plan in all its misguided glory to build upon. We’re not talking WMD any more. At long last, the Times has fully admitted to the consequences of withdrawing now, and the genocide they’re virtually predicting takes the modest concept of acceptable collateral damage to dizzying new heights. They’ve collected every misbegotten assumption we’ve been debunking piecemeal for years. We can fisk it point by illogical point, or we can use it as new template. They’re not just showing us what we’re fighting; they’re also showing us how. Will we rise to the challenge? The chips are down, and we’re about to find out who is really in the game and who is realistically just carping from the sidelines.

JM Hanes on July 9, 2007 at 10:58 PM

“We simply don’t have the numbers.”

And that’s the acid test for the conservative blogosphere, as it is for any minority, because we’ll almost never have the numbers. Sure, we can rally public opinion, but can we actually influence it? We spend most of our time preaching to the converted instead of figuring out how to challenge conventional wisdom where it counts. There’s plenty of intelletual firepower on this side of the argument; if we’re not equpped to negotiate the rock & the hard place we now confront, it’s the template, stupid!

Liberals didn’t start out with the numbers either, but what they do have is a compelling narrative which is almost impervious to the kind of fact checking endeavors we’re all so good at. Debunking is easy, and when we were in the majority on the war it may have seemed suffiicient, but we’re still fisking away instead of developing a competitive narrative of our own. If the pullout Democrats are looking for occurs, it won’t just be an Adminstration failure, it will be ours too.

Make no mistake about it, there is a White House failure here, and no help on the way from that quarter. They never understood the role of story telling in politics on the first place. Folks may take offense, but they were selling immigration the same way they’ve sold pretty much everything else, including Iraq. Plan B is even simpler than Plan A: You pull up the drawbridge and try to present the smallest, hardest target you can manage. You replace Rumsfeld with the lowest profile guy you can persude to take the job, and then create a war czar to confuse the field.

Before the ’06 election, we could get away with ignoring a defection by someone like Richard Lugar. Unfortunately, with the President in full Turtle Mode, there’s only one storyline in town. It’s Baker/Hamilton, the liberals own it, and we have a decision to make. We can keep on talking amongst ourselves, or we can work on figuring out how to engage the opposition where it counts. The snark, and the ridicule, and the outrage we share are no substitute for a coherent argument, and they don’t make an unpopular argument any easier to sell.

It’s true that we can’t just channel public opinion into Congress this time around, but if being in the minority is an unsurmountable obstacle, why are we even here? The war effort is at risk because of Republican defections, and that’s something we should be able to do something about. Democrats have successfully made this George Bush’s war, and that’s a double whammy we’ve got a lame duck President whose popularity has also tanked. Maybe it’s actually a stroke of luck that the Prez seems to have given up campaigning for the war, because Republicans need something to defend that is not Bush’s war. What they desperately lack are cheat sheets on the Democrats “facts” and a comprehensive not-Bush set of talking points that knock your socks off.

And guess what! The New York Times just handed us that storyline on a silver platter. They’ve done the one thing that almost no Democrat but Murtha has been dumb enough to do till now: they gave us an actual plan in all its misguided glory to build upon. We’re not talking WMD any more. At long last, the Times has fully admitted to the consequences of withdrawing now, and the genocide they’re virtually predicting takes the modest concept of acceptable collateral damage to dizzying new heights. They’ve collected every misbegotten assumption we’ve been debunking piecemeal for years. We can fisk it point by illogical point, or we can use it as new template. They’re not just showing us what we’re fighting; they’re also showing us how. Will we rise to the challenge? The chips are down, and we’re about to find out who is really in the game and who is realistically just carping from the sidelines.

JM Hanes on July 9, 2007 at 10:58 PM

Sorry, don’t know how I double-tapped that one. I blame Bush Nancy.

JM Hanes on July 9, 2007 at 11:01 PM

Great post, JM Hanes. I’m not sure I understood it all, but I agreed with what I did understand. I’m still stuck on this. “We shouldn’t be in the middle of a civil war.” Ok, ok, side A is fighting side B, and we’re in the middle–gotcha. “We should bring our troops home and end the war now.” Ok, got it. So we get out of the middle and then side A and side B, um, hmm, they, what–stop fighting–oh dang it, you lost me, better start over again. Ok Side A, and Side B, us in the middle, ok . . .

smellthecoffee on July 9, 2007 at 11:28 PM

A friend of mine just started this– http://www.win-the-war.com Check it out. Refer some people. We have to go viral in our opposition to this crap that’s being shoved down our throats.

I remember thinking, and I’m sure many other have done the same, why didn’t they stop Hitler while there was still time? How could they fail to see what was coming? We are watching the answers to those questions being played out right now. Maybe when a nuclear Iran has control all the way through Syria into Lebanon, people will wake up. At the eleventh hour, of course. 11:59, to be precise.

smellthecoffee on July 9, 2007 at 11:39 PM

smellthecoffee:

I still can’t believe that I’d acidentally double post the one comment I was too tired to edit for either clarity or length. It’s probably just as well that we appear to be the only ones here! The point that I managed to obsure was originally pretty straightforward: As long as we’re picking at somebody else’s argument/narrative instead of promoting our own, we’re loosing. The New York Times laid out the competition’s best case, and if we can’t come up with a better story, the jig is up.

JM Hanes on July 10, 2007 at 2:30 AM

I finally found an article that listed the wavering GOP Senators by name. According to the Forbes:

Congressional Republicans, including most of those calling for a new Iraq strategy, were expected to oppose Levin’s proposal to set a timetable for troop withdrawals. But various members were expected to propose alternative measures, including legislation calling on Bush to adopt as U.S. policy recommendations by the Iraq Study Group, which identified a potential redeployment date of spring 2008.

So far, six GOP senators – Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, Robert Bennett of Utah, Susan Collins of Maine, John Sununu of New Hampshire and Pete Domenici of New Mexico – support such legislation.

Other prominent Republican senators, including Richard Lugar of Indiana, George Voinovich of Ohio, Chuck Hagel of Nebraska and Olympia Snowe of Maine, also say the U.S. should begin redeployments.

I know that Snowe is major RINO material, but it still shocked me to find a Republican, other than Chuck Hagel, saying (per the Providence Journal), “Obviously, the surge has not worked.” Even John Edwards wouldn’t hazard such a statement three weeks into a major operation, if he were still a Senator from North Carolina.

Does anyone here know where I can find out how many guys from Maine are serving in Iraq?

JM Hanes on July 10, 2007 at 2:32 AM

Harry Reid is a snarky little prick!

sabbott on July 10, 2007 at 4:33 AM

The Constitution gives members of Congress, both Houses, immunity for their behavior as legislators. The exact language is:

They shall in all cases, except treason, felony and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at the session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any speech or debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other place. [Article 1, Section 6, paragraph 1]

Note, treason negates the immunity granted members of Congress. Not since the Civil War has this been an issue. Until now, that is. What Reid is doing is perilously close to committing treason. He is advocating and working towards the defeat of the United States during a time of war.

Of course, some think I’m mistaken. But I’ve performed considerable research on the subject and here is what I’ve found:

The Founders explicitly limited the declaration of war to the Congress. Neither the President nor the Judiciary can declare war. Further, the US Supreme Court has ruled that an authorization to use force passed by both Houses and signed into law as a public act is the same thing as a formal declaration of War.

However, the Founders gave the President the exclusive and plenary power to wage war, not Congress. Included in the “war powers” is the exclusive Presidential determination of what strategy to use, when to use it, and the sole power to determine when hostilities have ended. Congress, according to the Constitution and case law has no say in HOW the war is waged.

That bears repeating: CONGRESS is not empowered by either the Constitution or by US Supreme Court decision to make decisions or policy on how to wage war. That is the exclusive power of the President.

Some, including some in government say that Congress is left with, or is reduced to, the power of the purse. That is to say, Congress can defund the war and, thus, prevent the waging of war. Except, that this has never been done by ANY Congress, not even during the Vietnam War. Then, Congress cut off funding after all combat and training troops had been removed from the country, not while our troops were still fighting.

Arguably, given the precedents, there is a view that once Congress has declared war (or authorized military force), that they cannot “go back on their word” and defund it because it would interfere with the President’s ability to fight a war they authorized. Declaring war, the Founders felt, was of such a serious nature — one that would consume the blood and treasure of the (then) newly formed nation — that they wanted Congress to be absolutly sure of the necessity AND, as representatives of the People and the States, to be the sole power to commit the nation to fighting. But the Founders did not mention ONE WORD about Congress being able to end wars. Not by “the power of the purse.” Not by public law. Not by statutory curtailment of the President’s war powers, either. The Founders clearly limited Congress’s role to that of determining when to go to war and only that.

The plain fact is that Congress cannot modify the Constitution by resolution. It has to be formally amended. Passing funding cutoffs, after war has been declared (or the military use of force authorized) is not one of the powers Congress has because it is ursurping the ability of the President to wage war, a power that is his and only his.

Therefore, what Reid (and Levin) are doing is not only unconstitutional, but the act of doing so effectively sabotages the ability of the country to wage the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that borders on treason. This is, I admit, a fine and close reading of the Constitution, but the logic is clear.

As near as I can tell, ONCE WAR HAS BEEN DECLARED, Congress no longer has the power to defund that war as it ursurps the powers of the plenary power of the President to wage it. Once war has been declared, Congress’s role, as defined by the Constitution, is to (1) raise money to pay for it, (2) raise armies and provide training, (3) outfit the militia and train when necessary, (4) issues letter of Marque and Reprisal, (5) appoint courts to determine the disposition of prizes, and so on. If Congress refuses to appropriate funds to fight the war, then they would betraying the troops fighting it and would be making decisions (de facto) concerning the waging of it (i.e., forcing the President to STOP waging war). Causing the country to lose a war in progress is, clearly, treason.

Bush and Gonzales don’t have the stones to do it, but they could indict Pelosi for violating the Logan Act for her visits to Syria, and Reid (and others, including Pelosi and Murtha) for treason.

Congress does have one method of dealing with a war they do not like (or do not like how it is being waged) — they can FIRE the President if they are unhappy about the way the war has been waged. The process is called impeachment and removal by the Senate. To the best of my knowledge, this is the ONLY way Congress can disapprove of the way a war is run after approving the waging of it.

The Founders crafted the Constitution to insure the survival of the nation, and thence liberty. The last thing they wanted is runing a war by committee as happened during the Revolution. So they deliberately REMOVED the war powers from Congress and gave them to the President. And they made sure that there was no language in the Constitution to allow Congress to change its mind once war was delcared.

georgej on July 10, 2007 at 7:23 AM

Has anyone told Dirty Harry that what he described our troops should be doing is just what they are doing? And just when was the last time that Dirty Harry visited Iraq and asked our troops what they think should be done? Has this liberal idiot ever been to Iraq?

lynnv on July 10, 2007 at 8:34 AM

This just proves one of life’s lessons: Never trust a talking cadaver. Would any sane person turn the national security of our nation over to these cowardly democrats?

volsense on July 10, 2007 at 9:44 AM