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Had Enough? YES.


(guest post by Taylor Marsh)

"The news is going to be heartbreaking for my family," Ken MacKenzie, uncle of Army Pfc. Kristian Menchaca, told NBC’s "Today" show. "Because the U.S. government did not have a plan in place, my nephew has paid for it with his life," he said. Missing Soldier’s Uncle Criticizes U.S.

President Bush said this on Monday: "There will be no early withdrawal as long as we run the Congress and occupy the White House."  Got political ego? At least we know the Republicans’ priorities.  Saving political face.

The Democrats are united on the most important aspect of all: we all want to change course on Iraq.

Cut and run?

Republicans want to sit and watch. That’s the Republican plan. Sit and watch (see update) until 2009, but passing the buck won’t get the job done.

Our soldiers know what they’re getting into when they volunteer. But they clearly deserve better than they’re getting from the Bush administration and the Republicans who back Bush at all costs. I’ve heard personally from military men, as well as interviewed a father of one Marine facing charges, and I can tell you that the families of our soldiers are begging for real leadership. Something that will not come from the Republicans.

Pfc. Thomas L. Tucker and Pfc. Kristian Menchaca were tortured, then beheaded and killed, their bodies unrecognizable. Yet the Republican response is to sit and watch.

"Cut and run" may be cute and catchy, but some slogan to smear Democratic leaders doesn’t help our troops or the Iraqi people.

The American people are with us. They want a timetable, "benchmarks," but a change of course, for sure.

"Which comes closer to your view about U.S. troops in Iraq? The U.S. should set a timetable for withdrawal by announcing that it will remove all of its troops from Iraq by a certain date. The U.S. should keep troops in Iraq as long as necessary without setting any timetable for withdrawal." Options rotated.

Timetable: 53%
No Timetable: 41%
Unsure: 6%

Polling Report

It’s time for a referendum on the Republican "leadership" on Iraq. Democratic Senators John Kerry and Russ Feingold have joined together to demand it. Levin and Reed have another way, but all Democrats want a change in course. Even Joe Biden is demanding no permanent bases in Iraq.

Bush and the Republicans say "stay the course," but offer no course on which we can build. American troops in limbo, living a life of no way out or through is not a course, it is a suicide mission for warriors. We’ve got the dead, the wounded and critically maimed to prove it.

Kerry’s got it right, "lie and die" is how he described Republicans. If you’ve got a better one, let’s hear it.

The Republicans have no plan.

They have no purpose.

The president has chosen to punt. The Republicans willing to sit and watch, kicking the war down the years until 2009, as our soldiers die, hoping someone else will provide the answers.

One general begs to differ with W., and he actually knows what he’s talking about.

Before U.S. forces stand down, Iraqi security forces must stand up. The problem in Iraq is not military competency; it is political consolidation. Iraq has a large officer corps with plenty of combat experience from the Iran-Iraq war. Moktada al-Sadr’s Shiite militia fights well today without U.S. advisors, as do Kurdish pesh merga units. The problem is loyalty. To whom can officers and troops afford to give their loyalty? The political camps in Iraq are still shifting. So every Iraqi soldier and officer today risks choosing the wrong side. As a result, most choose to retain as much latitude as possible to switch allegiances. All the U.S. military trainers in the world cannot remove that reality. But political consolidation will. It should by now be clear that political power can only be established via Iraqi guns and civil war, not through elections or U.S. colonialism by ventriloquism.

Cut and Run? You Bet, By Lt. Gen. William E. Odom

Our soldiers won the war, they captured Saddam, the Iraqis have voted and their government is in place. Our job is done.

It’s time to change course in Iraq. Democrats all agree on that.

Note: By the way, I have no idea where I heard "sit and watch" first, but it was somewhere on cable.  Can’t attribute it, but I’ve heard it more than once.

UPDATE:  I just had someone email me some links to "sit and watch," which originated with Rep. Rahm Emanuel!  It’s obviously gone viral. Also see here, here and here.

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Taylor Marsh

Taylor Marsh

Taylor is a political commentator and radio personality who has been interviewed by C-SPAN's Washington Journal and all across TV and right-wing radio. She's been on the web for 10 years, going to blogging in late 2005. Taylor is affiliated with The Patriot Project, writes for Huffington Post, as well as Alternet. Her radio show debuted in 2002, which she now brings to her blog Mon-Thur, 6:00 p.m. Eastern or 3:00 p.m. Pacific. One of her passions is painting and creating political art. The graphic at the top of her blog is taken from the expressionist flag art that hangs in her home. She was born in Missouri, and has lived in New York City, Los Angeles and Las Vegas and some points in between.