"Every nation has its war party. It is not the party of democracy. It is the party of autocracy. It seeks to dominate absolutely. It is commercial, imperialistic, ruthless. It tolerates no opposition. It is just as arrogant, just as despotic, in London, or in Washington, as in Berlin. The American Jingo is twin to the German Junker…. If there is no sufficient reason for war, the war party will make war on one pretext, then invent another."
–Robert M. La Follette
Which brings us to St. McCain.
September 2002: "Success in Iraq will be fairly easy."
And this is but one of many such predictions and proclamations over the years:
March 20, 2003: “But I believe, Katie, that the Iraqi people will greet us as liberators.”
April 9, 2003: “It’s clear that the end is very much in sight.”
April 23, 2003: “There’s not a history of clashes that are violent between Sunnis and Shiahs. So I think they can probably get along.”
December 12, 2003: “This is a mission accomplished. They know how much influence Saddam Hussein had on the Iraqi people, how much more difficult it made to get their cooperation.”
March 7, 2004: “I’m confident we’re on the right course.”
October 31, 2004: "I think the initial phases of it were so spectacularly successful that it took us all by surprise.”
December 8, 2005: “I do think that progress is being made in a lot of Iraq. Overall, I think a year from now, we will have made a fair amount of progress if we stay the course. If I thought we weren’t making progress, I’d be despondent.”
January 4, 2007: Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) claimed that he knew the Iraq war was “probably going to be long and hard and tough,” and that he was “sorry” for those who voted for the war believing it would be “some kind of an easy task.”
August 18, 2007: It’s entertaining, in that I was the greatest critic of the initial four years, three and a half years. I came back from my first trip to Iraq and said, This is going to fail. We’ve got to change the strategy to the one we’re using now. But life isn’t fair.
January 4, 2008: We’ll stay 100 years.
January 4, 2008 (later): Make it a thousand, no… A MILLION!
May 15, 2008: Okay, okay, make me President and we’ll be leaving by 2013, when have I ever been wrong before?
May 27, 2008: "I will never surrender in Iraq, my friends, I will never surrender in Iraq." (to protesters demanding "End this War!") So ending the war means "surrender"…at least until 2013.
And this doesn’t even approach the many justifications of "why" we are there from WMD’s to Democracy to fighting them there so they won’t swim over here.
We should have listened to Fightin’ Bob La Follette — but we never do.