Democrats and Iraq

Despite fervent anti-war rhetoric the Democratic presidential candidates have all taken positions that may lead to a longer stay in Iraq for American troops. The Sunday New York Times has detailed the positions taken, and with one exception it appears that all have come to the position that withdrawal will take time and that such a withdrawal has some real downside potential for core American interests in the Middle East.

These positions and those of some rivals suggest that the Democratic bumper-sticker message of a quick end to the conflict — however much it appeals to primary voters — oversimplifies the problems likely to be inherited by the next commander in chief. Antiwar advocates have raised little challenge to such positions by Democrats.

Hillary Clinton position is examined in the Times story.

In political terms, their strategies are a balancing act. In her public appearances, Mrs. Clinton often says, “If this president does not end this war before he leaves office, when I am president, I will.” But she has affirmed in recent months remarks she made to The New York Times in March, when she said that there were “remaining vital national security interests in Iraq” that would require a continuing deployment of American troops. The United States’ security, she said then, would be undermined if part of Iraq turned into a failed state” that serves as a Petri dish for insurgents and Al Qaeda.”

Barack Obama position is described in the Times.

And Senator Barack Obama of Illinois would leave a military presence of as-yet unspecified size in Iraq to provide security for American personnel, fight terrorism and train Iraqis.

On the potential for U.S. intervention to stop a potential genocide the Times reports

Both candidates, in interviews or debates, have said that they would not support intervening in a genocidal war should the majority Shiites slaughter Sunnis — and Sunnis retaliate — on a much greater scale than now takes place.

But doesn’t the potential for genocide involve more than a potential Iraqi slaughter? Will foreign powers allow one side or another to gain an upper hand in an all out civil war? Won’t the Saudi’s and the Iranians intervene to help their co-religionists? And if they do what of the Turks in the north, who are already shelling Kurdish positions inside Iraq. Is there a potential for a regional conflagaration absent U.S. involvement? This war was a tragic mistake, and the problems it has created for this country as it seeks a coherent exit strategy are all to apparent. Read the New York Times story at this link.

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3 Responses to Democrats and Iraq

  1. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor,
    The problem has always been there. We got involved when the terrorists reach out and touched us to the tune of 3,000 innocent lives.

    I repeat- it is a world war. This is just one battle of that war. It will be a long war.

    I can see an atomic war out of this war.

    It will be interesting to watch the Democrats handle it.



  2. Bill Manzi says:

    There are some areas that are not in dispute. We know that America was hit, and we all agree that a response was necessary. The question is what was the right response. By the logic of they hit us so we need to hit them beyond Afghanistan I guess we could justify an invasion of Saudia Arabia or Syria. After all most of the 9/11 terrorists were Saudi nationals. For that matter Iran should be considered to be subject to pre-emptive invasion by your logic. In any one of those cases an invasion could be justified by the world war logic. We need to be careful and not cause more damage to ourselves in the world than we are already suffering. Good to be back!


  3. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor,

    The attack on the World Trade Center was not the first. Many Americans have been killed and and its interests have been attacked for some 20 years by Islamic terrorists.

    The first attack on the Trade Center,200 + Americans died in Lebanon in one explosion, Black Hawk down, The American ship in Yemen, Embassies in Africa, Americans kidnapped and killed in the Philippines just to name a few.

    If the French, Germans or Russians don’t like striking out against our enemies, it’s too bad. Some of these European allies are serving in Afghanistan but won’t fight.

    There is a host of extremists ready to die for the cause. We are not creating them They are prepared by the holy men who entice them from childhood.

    We ignore them at our peril

    Nice to have you back.



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