CommunityPam's House Blend

If you can stand it: watching Dear Leader's speech

The Blend Coffee Klatch is open; the speech on C-SPAN. However, you may want to spend your time on something more useful, like watching a pot of water boil.

The full text of the speech is here.

I have committed more than 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq. The vast majority of them – five brigades – will be deployed to Baghdad. These troops will work alongside Iraqi units and be embedded in their formations. Our troops will have a well-defined mission: to help Iraqis clear and secure neighborhoods, to help them protect the local population, and to help ensure that the Iraqi forces left behind are capable of providing the security that Baghdad needs.

…Our new approach comes after consultations with Congress about the different courses we could take in Iraq. Many are concerned that the Iraqis are becoming too dependent on the United States – and therefore, our policy should focus on protecting Iraq’s borders and hunting down al Qaeda. Their solution is to scale back America’s efforts in Baghdad – or announce the phased withdrawal of our combat forces. We carefully considered these proposals. And we concluded that to step back now would force a collapse of the Iraqi government, tear that country apart, and result in mass killings on an unimaginable scale. Such a scenario would result in our troops being forced to stay in Iraq even longer, and confront an enemy that is even more lethal. If we increase our support at this crucial moment, and help the Iraqis break the current cycle of violence, we can hasten the day our troops begin coming home.

…Acting on the good advice of Senator Joe Lieberman and other key members of Congress, we will form a new, bipartisan working group that will help us come together across party lines to win the war on terror.

Holy Joe

“I applaud the President for rejecting the fatalism of failure and pursuing a new course to achieve success in Iraq.”

I love Konagod‘s comment…

This is bullshit. It’s always nice to know Joe Lieberman is still the suckling pig to this idiot from the Texas bush country.

And the world is topsy-turvy…Winger 2008 prez candidate, Kansas Senator Sam Brownback:

“Sending more troops to Iraq is not the answer…The United States cannot sustain a war effort without broad public support, and we cannot count on such support unless the situation in Iraq improves and American casualties decrease.”

The Chimp’s plan calls for an escalation of forces numbering 20,000. That’s a lower figure than he was advised by those calling for a big “surge” of forces needed to overpower the insurgency

Why did he low-ball it? Because there aren’t enough warm bodies to send.

The Joint Chiefs were also worried that sending more troops would set up the U.S. military for an even bigger failure — with no backup options. They were concerned that the Iraqis would not deliver the troops to handle their own security efforts, as had happened in the past. They were particularly alarmed about the prospect of U.S. troops fighting in a political vacuum if the administration did not complement the military plan with political and economic changes, according to people familiar with their views.

…Then there was the thorny problem of finding enough troops to deploy. Those who favored a “surge,” such as Kagan and McCain, were looking for a sizable force that would turn the tide in Baghdad. But the Joint Chiefs made clear they could muster 20,000 at best — not for long, and not all at once.

When is that skills-based draft going into effect?

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding