Monday, June 26, 2006

Withdrawal Plan Griping

This is just humorous.

Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) said that the plan attributed to Gen. George W. Casey resembles the thinking of many Democrats who voted for a nonbinding resolution to begin a troop drawdown in December. That resolution was defeated Thursday on a largely party-line vote in the Senate.

"That means the only people who have fought us and fought us against the timetable, the only ones still saying there shouldn't be a timetable really are the Republicans in the United States Senate and in the Congress," Boxer said on CBS's "Face the Nation." "Now it turns out we're in sync with General Casey."
Heh. So Boxer believes that the dems proposals are "in sync" with the military's planners. How interesting. Which proposal is she thinking is in sync? She must mean the Levin-Reed plan since the Kerry-Murtha run-and -hide plan doesn't sound anything like this. It also makes you wonder why so little credit is given to the military on their plans, since this report wasn't issued to the press, but leaked. Not that I don't think the "leak" isn't politics at play, but more likely that the generals had nothing to do with it and that they most probably have had this plan for quite some time.
Sen. Carl M. Levin (Mich.), one of the two sponsors of the nonbinding resolution, which offered no pace or completion date for a withdrawal, said the report is another sign of what he termed one of the "worst-kept secrets in town" -- that the administration intends to pull out troops before the midterm elections in November.

"It shouldn't be a political decision, but it is going to be with this administration," Levin said on "Fox News Sunday." "It's as clear as your face, which is mighty clear, that before this election, this November, there's going to be troop reductions in Iraq, and the president will then claim some kind of progress or victory."

"It shouldn't be a political decision," he bellows, while pressing to attach a resolution saying the same thing to a military finance bill. It's only the administration playing political games here. Washington is like a room full of five-year-olds these days. (or maybe I'm just noticing it more.)

Of course, this statement strikes one as the bit of reality in all of the screeching:
A Pentagon official said his impression is that Bush and Casey had no lengthy discussion about troop reductions, and that any projections of specific numbers remain speculative. This source noted that Casey had said that he hoped U.S. force levels would be substantially reduced this year but has decided against such a move because of the continuing violence in Iraq.

"I think there will be a modest decrease between now and the end of the year," the official added. But, he concluded, "Nobody really knows."

So, Levin's predictions may not have any weight on the topic.

Then there is Kerry:
Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.), who co-sponsored an unsuccessful resolution setting a July 1, 2007, deadline for the removal of U.S. combat troops from Iraq, issued a statement saying the Casey plan looks "an awful lot like what the Republicans spent the last week attacking. Will the partisan attack dogs now turn their venom and disinformation campaign on General Casey?"
Yes John, the partisan bickering will be aimed at the generals. The ones that the Rethugs have been saying should make the decisions on troop levels all along. Of course, your run-and-hide resolution wasn't trying to force the generals into any action that they may have disapproved of.
But Sen. John W. Warner (R-Va.), chairman of the Armed Services Committee, played down the significance of the reported briefing. "The department's drawn up plans at all times, but I think it would be wrong now to say that this is the plan that we're going to operate under," he said on "Fox News Sunday."

Warner counseled patience. "We have struggled and made tremendous sacrifice to give this nation its sovereignty," he said. "They are now beginning to exercise this sovereignty with a young government. Give them a chance to move out. We will consult with them. I'm confident our government will not let them make mistakes that would reflect adversely on troop withdrawals."

Oh, that's clever. The generals propose a course of action that has some viability, but another politico decides it's not the way to operate. Sorry, the generals have had enough guidance from the political set, maybe they should be left to actually run the details.

Funny, almost sounds like the congress is now in the job of telling the generals how to do their jobs. This is definitely a case where politics should stay out. Politics will set the end goals, no doubt, but implementation should be left to those that have the responsibility.

1 comment:

Granted said...

I heard Juan Williams on NPR this morning telling how the military plan is the same as the Dem plan. Another moment where strict self-control kept me from driving off the road while listening to NPR.
The plan has always been to get out. The suggestion that the military is suddenly in agreement with the Dems is nuts. They've been working on draw down plans since the day after they started working on deployment plans. That's how the military works. Actually, they probably had two groups working simultaneously on both plans, plus another couple of groups working on "attack from this position in that direction" plans too.